Fleet card provider WEX is realizing an unexpected marketing opportunity in preparations for Winter Storm Jonas: Its mobile app can enable snowbound users to instantly locate of the nearest operating gas station.

This feature may be a boon to motorists and emergency personnel to determine where utilities are still available as heavy snowfall threatens to cut off services to some areas, WEX said in an announcement Jan. 22.

The South Portland, Maine-based company for several years has been refining its WEX Connect app, so that it can quickly guide truck and fleet drivers in the middle of their routes to find fuel and other vehicle services. The app is designed to provide users with real-time data to recommend the best value on fuel at nearby stations, including which stations are open.

Though WEX developed the app for fleet drivers, during Hurricane Sandy the company became aware of its usefulness during a crisis. "Since then, we've seen WEX Connect become a critical resource for all drivers during natural disasters," said Peggy Watson, WEX’s vice president of North America fleet product, in a press release.

WEX Connect gathers data from WEX’s proprietary fuel management network, which has connections to thousands of fuel and service stations across the U.S.

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