BAY MINETTE, Ala. — Early this morning, Savita Kakadia found her BP LLC licensed Driftwood service station on Ala. 59 north of Bay Minette covered in bright orange graffiti.
Anti-BP profanity covered her gas pumps, parking area and storefront windows and doors. Kakadia described the situation as sad, but all too common.
She said anti-BP vandals have already targeted the station multiple times since the Gulf oil spill started, but never to this extent.
Previously, they just tipped over her trash cans and flipped her off, she said.
Enlarge Mike Kittrell Early Thursday morning, July 15, 2010, Savita Kakadia found her BP LLC licensed Driftwood service station on Ala. 59 north of Bay Minette, Ala., covered in bright orange graffiti. (Press-Register, Mike Kittrell) Oil Spill Vandalism 07-15-2010 gallery (6 photos)
Kakadia understands the anti-BP sentiment, but she said people are taking it out on the wrong people.
“BP doesn’t own this station,” she said, “I do. If I had the money, I would have changed the name (of my station), but I don’t have enough money (to break the contract with BP).”
According to Arleen Alexander, president of the Petroleum & Convenience Marketers Association of Alabama, BP does not corporately own any of its service stations in Alabama.
Typically, a gasoline company like BP will give the station owner money up front to brand the station with signs, paint and pump logos, she said. If the owner wants to break a contract with BP, they would have to repay a portion of this money.
Kakadia said she doesn’t know who vandalized her station, but she doesn’t think any of her regular Bay Minette customers would have done it.
“They’re good people,” she said.