Gas was stolen from two Second Harvest Food Bank trucks earlier this week in San Carlos, a spokeswoman for the nonprofit said.
The gas, estimated to be worth $400, was stolen at the food bank's Bing Center at 1051 Bing St. overnight Monday, spokeswoman Caitlin Kerk said.
On Tuesday morning, employees found gas lines had been cut on the trucks and gas was all over the ground, Kerk said.
Officials at the nonprofit estimate the total loss to add up to about $17,000, which includes fees to have the trucks towed and to hire a security guard to watch over the facility, Kerk said.
"The loss is equivalent to more than 34,000 meals," Second Harvest Food Bank CEO Kathy Jackson said in a statement. "We have to get the food out into the community on time and on schedule, and we need all of our trucks up and running to do that."
While security cameras are set up at the Bing Center, they were not pointed in the direction of the trucks parked in the back of the building, Kerk said.
Second Harvest Food Bank, which serves people in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties, launched their annual holiday food drive in October with a goal of raising $13.2 million and gathering 2 million pounds of food.
Anyone interested in donating to the food bank may do so by visiting their website at www.shfb.org or by calling (866) 234-3663.