The final gas station in Minto shut down last week, forcing residents in the small central New Brunswick village to drive about 20 minutes down the road to fill up their tanks.

Minto had seven or eight gas stations several years ago, but the number of pumps in the village has been dwindling for years.

Last week, the only remaining gas station, a Petro-Canada store, suddenly closed its doors and many in the village are now wondering if it will ever reopen.

Minto Mayor Eric Barnett said the nearest gas station is now about 20 minutes away.

"It’s inconvenient to have to travel outside your village limits to get gas. It makes it harder for our village equipment, we have Irving credit cards so we have to go get gas up in Chipman," he said.

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Minto Mayor Eric Barnett said he is trying to find a new owner, who is willing to open a gas station in the village. CBC

The mayor said he does not know if the closure is permanent, but he is actively trying to find a new owner for the station, which is up for sale.

The owner of the Petro-Canada gas station did not return calls for an interview.

Kendall Coburn works next door to the gas station at R & D Welding and he said no one saw the closure coming.

"The only thing I can figure out, they ran out of gas and we haven’t seen a gas truck here since," Coburn said.

Minto, a community that was built around the coal mining industry, has 2,500 residents and is about 50 kilometres east of Fredericton.

Carla Miller, who runs a massage therapy clinic in Minto, said she hopes the station will re-open soon.

She said many people live in the community and commute to work elsewhere and rely on having a gas station in the village.

"This is a community that’s very much a bedroom town or community of Fredericton. A lot of families, young families live here and travel back and forth between Fredericton and Minto, so we do need the supply here," Miller said.