After his tank ran dry, Syrian taxi driver Abu Sammy had to get out and push his car with the help of a passer-by to a long queue at a Damascus gas station.
"It is really tiring," said the driver after wheeling his taxi to the pumps in the east of the capital, one hand on the steering wheel.
The lines at the stations were the latest sign of a fuel crisis hitting regime-held parts of Syria, as the government set a cap on the daily consumption of subsidised gasoline.
Abu Sammy said his car trouble was par for the course after months of endless queueing for scarce cooking gas and fuel oil.
"Our destiny is to wait in queues," he said, sitting in his taxi at the gas station in the capital's Zablatani district.
"After [cooking] gas, it was fuel oil. After fuel oil, now it is [gasoline]. What it will be tomorrow, we have no idea," he said.
Syria's government has been facing a flurry of international sanctions since the conflict started in 2011, including over the import of petroleum-related products.
On Saturday, the ministry of petrol and mineral resources said it was temporarily slashing the daily cap on subsidised gasoline by half, from 40 to 20 litres per vehicle.
On Monday, gas stations said they received another memo from the ministry instructing them to further half the supply of fuel to 20 litres every 48 hours.
'Not nearly enough'
Taxi driver Abdu Masrabi, 67, anxiously watched the nozzle filling up the tank of his yellow cab, waiting for it to shut off, indicating he had reached his quota.
He had been queueing for four hours to fill his tank with his permitted share.
"It is not nearly enough," he said. "I work with this taxi, driving it around all day. Now I have managed to fill it up with this tiny amount, I will drive home and go back to work tomorrow."
A reduced supply of fuel will limit his ability to ferry passengers around, Masrabi said, but he needs to work every day.
"If I stopped working I would not be able to feed myself or my children."
On Monday night, Ali Ghanem, the minister of petrol and mineral resources, said the temporary cap would not effect the monthly allowance of subsidised fuel.
Motorists were still entitled to 200 litres of subsidised fuel every month, he said.
The latest decision is meant to limit the amount of fuel each vehicle can consume on a daily basis, "to allow for a larger number of citizens to fill their tanks on any given day", he said during a tour of Damascus gas stations.
But Damascus residents fear the state-supported monthly allowance could drop.
Prime Minister Emad Khamis on Saturday said most Syrians consumed an average of 120 litres a month.
"This is the quantity that should be subsidised... anything above that will be sold at the normal rate," he said.
Since Russia's military intervention in the Syrian conflict in 2015, the regime now controls almost two-thirds of Syria. But its main oil and gas fields in the north-east remain outside its control.
In November, the US Treasury issued a new advisory threatening penalties against those "involved in petroleum-related shipping transactions with the government of Syria".
It also moved to disrupt a network "through which the Iranian regime, working with Russian companies, provides millions of barrels of oil to the Syrian government".
Lines hundreds of metres long have formed near gas pumps in recent days as Syrians rush to obtain their subsidised share.
But while some drivers complained they needed more cheap gas, others said their main worry was time wasted crawling in queues.
Hussam Antabli said he recently filled up on non-subsidised fuel for twice the price -- 9,000 Syrian pounds (around $20) -- just to avoid hours of waiting.
"I am buying time at that price," he said. "I would rather work than wait."