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Automated fuel pumps for Lanka
Sunday, 23 July 2006 - 6:42 AM SL Time

ri Lanka has begun setting up automated fuel pumping stations linked to computers with payment by credit card, industry officials said last week.

Laugfs Petroleum Pvt Ltd, a local company that owns eight fuel stations, on Monday upgraded one its stations at Maharagama to an automated one with credit card swiping machines, computer-linked pumps and fuel tanks. There are more than 500 fuel sheds in Sri Lanka mostly owned by the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) and Lanka India Oil Company (LIOC).

LIOC last week began distributing fuel to sheds outside the Western province including Colombo, after a near 3-4 week shutdown at its sheds.

LIOC supplies ran out after a dispute with the government over delayed subsidy payments which have now been sorted out. LIOC officials said another fuel shipment was due shortly for distribution in the western province.

Shamal Boteju, General Manager at Laugfs Petroleum Pvt Ltd, said they plan to automate all their remaining seven sheds at a cost of around Rs 2 million per shed in the next eight months. 'Automation ensures a leap in our efficiency levels and provides self service to customers. A supervisor monitors the pumps through a computer from the office and can shut it at any time. The fuel tank is also connected to a computer and the available quantities could be checked at any time instead of the old system of using a dipstick to manually check the quantity,' he said. The automated pump was developed by Ajit de Silva, an IT specialist with his own company, and was launched some months back as a pilot project at a fuel station at Tissamaharama in the south. The shed is owned by the De Silva family. 'It worked well and we have 3-wheel trishaw drivers pumping their own fuel,' De Silva said adding that a second station at Balangoda was installed with automated pumps. Sri Lanka so far has only three fuel stations that are automated.

De Silva said the idea of developing an automated system arose after he was confronted with running the family fuel station at Tissamaharama. 'We had to have a perfect management system and avoid corruption,' he said adding that he and his team at Acal Systems Pvt Ltd created the concept and design. 'It is an indigenous Sri Lankan product.'

For example, in fuel stations overseas motorists pump the fuel by themselves and then make payment whereas in Sri Lanka it is the other way around ' pay first (credit card) and then pump the fuel ' to avoid situations where motorists will drive off without paying. The system also provides a computer-generated bill if a motorist requires.

Related News Articles:
15-4-2006   Laugfs to increase LPG refilling capacity
9-9-2005   Laugfs embarks on Rs. 250 mn supermarket expansion drive

• Sunday Times

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23 Jul 2006 17:52:06 GMT  Report for Abuse   
This is very good. Only thing GOSL will help foreign companies to undercut this and provide automated systems for a cheaper price.

Foreigners will supply cheaper system, not becuase the cost of production is low or they love sriLankans, so they want to give things for better prices,

International companies have done that to demoralise and discourage inventions in every country. So, they can have the advantage.

I hope stupid bereaucrats of GOSL will not undermine this and support home inventions.
Edited By - AnuD - 23 Jul 2006 17:53:26 GMT
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23 Jul 2006 21:05:26 GMT  Report for Abuse   
What is the point of having new technology to dispense petrol when there seems to be an eternal shortage of petrol in the country!
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23 Jul 2006 21:05:38 GMT  Report for Abuse   
This is very good.

easy and open for more credit card fraud ?
Joined: Jun 2006
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23 Jul 2006 23:37:46 GMT  Report for Abuse   
When in short supply of bread Eat cakes
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24 Jul 2006 03:12:16 GMT  Report for Abuse   
If it works the system will have demands all over the world. Today many mortorists in developed countries, run away without paying for the petrol. Provided that they have made the system three wheeler drivers and bus conductor fraud proof, there will be no one in the rest of the whole world who could override this system. That's an A-class security certificate for the system.
NB:Let's wait until commission hungry official gets a new idea.
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