Keeping Communities Moving: Mobile Fueling's Role During the COVID-19 Pandemic
The COVID-19 global pandemic has taught us important lessons about resiliency. We've all had to adapt to changes in our environment, and the mobile fueling on-demand (MFOD) industry is no exception. Booster began 2020 servicing mostly vehicles in office parking lots while customers were at work. While many of our customers shifted to sheltering in place and consuming less fuel, we've switched gears to accommodate the more than 70% growth in essential businesses and organizations. The role we've played over the past nine months can be broken into three categories: keeping people safe, unlocking efficiencies for businesses that are busier than ever, and being consistent for those who rely on our services.
The MFOD industry provides our communities with the only 100% contactless way to fuel their vehicles. These days, that's more important than ever. Gas station pump handles are highly contaminated with pathogenic microbes and viruses, including COVID-19, that can live on plastic surfaces like gas station pump handles for up to three days.
In response to the pandemic, Booster launched a Pop-up Gas Station (PUGS) service where we set up shop in the parking lots of essential places like pharmacies and grocery stores. We did this so that people who had to venture out on a run for essentials could cut down on extra stops and reduce their exposure risk. Instead of Booster fueling customers at their offices, our customers filled up by simply coming to one of our pop-up locations, where mini-tankers awaited app-based orders, and our service professional team took care of the rest.
In addition to meeting customers at essential spots, we continued our usual at-work delivery service for essential employees. Companies such as Gilead, that have scientists working in labs, continued using Booster. We even launched our service at a large biotechnology company that wanted to encourage its scientists to drive straight from home to the lab — no added stops or risk along the way.
In addition to providing services that kept our communities safe, we've adopted new safety measures like staggered shifts and frequent, routine cleaning of high-touch surfaces to keep the Booster team safe.
The pandemic has pushed many people to start shopping online, and last-mile delivery companies are busier than ever. Booster works with many last-mile delivery companies to ensure that their vehicles are always fueled, limiting delivery drivers' risks at the gas station and helping to deliver up to nearly 20 more packages per route.
Additionally, Booster's service helps increase each last-mile delivery company's efficiency. This helps them deliver more goods, faster, and for a better cost to the end consumer. As a result, our communities get more access to the goods that they need and reduce their need to go into busy stores.
People, companies, food banks, ambulance services, and fire departments have relied on MFOD throughout the pandemic. So many services have been forced to shut down or pause due to shelter-in-place orders. Booster is honored to be a consistent part of the solution.
Booster launched its services at The San Mateo Consolidated Fire Department (SMCFD) in 2020. The SMCFD team was concerned about effectively protecting its 154 firefighters from COVID-19 exposure, especially with fire season in view. For emergency services, partnering with Booster has not only helped keep employees safe, but also continued to reliably service their vehicles so they could be always at the ready whenever duty calls.