When Lynda Logie pulled into the Bonjour Total Service Station in Knysna on November 1 and asked the pump attendant for R200’s worth of fuel, she assumed that as usual they would be guided by the clear green label on the fuel-tank cap reading “Diesel”. But instead, the attendant pumped in unleaded petrol – with disastrous consequences.

A few kilometres from Bonjour Total, the vehicle seized up. On examining her cash slip, she discovered that her 2007 model Tata TDI car had been fed petrol, not diesel. Logie returned to the Total garage where owner Guy Clift called a local company to siphon off the petrol from her tank.

Total SA Legal responds. Click here to read it.

Like to see more ?

Subscribe to our on-line edition !

For a mere R305.00 per year you get the convenience of our online version including:
  • Twelve monthly issues of Noseweek delivered to your browser
  • A searchable archive
  • Access to every back issue since 1993 !
  • A downloadable PDF version

If it’s just the article you are after, you can purchase it by clicking here.

Tempted ?

For a taste of what awaits you, you are welcome to browse this free issue.

Total South Africa
Tata dealership
Share this article:

Reader's comments

Like to add your own comment ? Please click here to subscribe - OR -
Submitted by : Christelle Keyser on 2018-08-16 10:58:27
I am not a Total customer nor a Total retailer. I disagree totally with your opinion and especially Ms Logie's logic. She should not 'assume" when filling her car. Firstly she did not specify the product and her sticker was GREEN (same colour as the ULP). I could therefor understand why the attendant made a mistake. I fully agree with the letter from Total. The customer is ultimitly responsible for her car and all the products purchased by her. (I refer to the FRA's legal opinion on the Motorist's responsibility when fuelling his vehicle dated 12 July 2006 by Peter Morgan.) She was negligent and cannot expect the attendant nor the retailer to take responsibility - I am sure you could confirm this with the FRA (which you should have done in the first place). Ms Logie received a FREE service (no customer pay for the attendant's service) and the least she could have done is specify the product or get out of her car and making sure that the correct product is dispensed. I think Total's responce was excellent. Maybe Ms Logie could, like in Europe, help herself in the future.
Submitted by : Clive Varejes of GALLO MANOR on 2014-03-14 17:14:44
Why only avoid that particular Total service station?
In my opinion all Total service stations should be boycotted as a matter of principle unless and until Total recompense her in full.
Submitted by : of GALLO MANOR on 2014-03-11 21:07:25
Send the Garage concerned a Molotov - make sure its Caltex Unleaded !
Submitted by : Patrick Dowling of Kommetjie on 2014-03-02 11:57:42
Big Oil hey! This is a microcosm of the big global picture.
Submitted by : Mike Turner of RANDBURG on 2014-02-28 11:13:33
I used to be a Total customer, but never again. Slimy bastards ! At all costs avoid this particular filling station which is the first encountered on the left-hand side when approaching Knysna from the bridge.
Submitted by : Jay Hooghuis of Lynnwood Ridge on 2014-02-27 22:53:34
Typical big corporate attitude, "we screw your life up, and if you dare tell anybody we will ruin you financially through legal action, we have deeper pockets than you."
The R27000 it would have cost to sort out the problem, probably paid by their public liability insurance, and further tax deductible as a business expense, is small change compared to the bad publicity Total is now receiving.

Totally disgusting Total!!!


While every reasonable effort is taken to ensure the accuracy and soundness of the contents of this publication, neither the authors nor the publishers of this website bear any responsibility for the consequences of any actions based on the information contained therein.