Skyrocketing gas prices can cause bad attitudes when drivers pull up to a gas pump. However, there are several things you can do that may increase their anger and cause a scene. Some of these things are unsafe and inconsiderate, which an angry driver isn’t likely to tolerate for long.
You may get lucky and get a honk of the horn or flip of the bird. However, there’s no telling how a driver will respond when you commit one of the seven deadly sins of gas stations.
Let’s get started!
How Do You Know if a Gas Station is Safe?
There are times when you’re running low on fuel and need to stop to fill up your tank. Knowing if a gas station is safe beforehand can be tricky unless you’ve researched your route and planned your stops. If you’re traveling with a partner, you can ask them to read reviews and see what others say about the gas station.
One of the best ways to know if a gas station is safe is to trust your gut. Find another gas station if you pull into a gas station and get a bad feeling. You might get a bad vibe if people are loitering or the gas station doesn’t have decent lighting.
A gas station with others filling up is a good sign and would deter anyone with seedy intentions from approaching you.
How Can You Be Safe at a Gas Station?
One of the best ways to be safe at a gas station is only to use gas stations that are well lit and have ample exterior lighting. You want to see if anyone is standing around or up to no good. People with ill intentions often like to hide under the cover of darkness.
You can be safe at a gas station by paying at the pump and not going inside. This can allow you to complete the transaction in minutes. You won’t have to leave your vehicle or wait in line to pay. Minimizing your time at the station can be beneficial, especially if you have no option but to stop.
Lastly, you should lock your vehicle when you get out of it.
There are reports of individuals sliding into back seats or through passenger doors while an unassuming driver fills the fuel tank. Minimize distractions like phone calls or headphones so you can be aware of your surroundings.
7 Deadly Sins of Gas Stations
Tensions will likely be high for most drivers filling up at the pump, especially with high prices. Avoid committing these seven deadly sins of gas stations so you’re not on the receiving end of their wrath.
Leave Gas Pump Unattended
This is one mistake we’ve seen countless times. Drivers must stand by their vehicle and monitor the pump while fueling it. You’re putting too much trust in the pump if you start it and head inside to use the restroom or climb back into your vehicle to stay comfortable.
Pumps can malfunction and cause gasoline to spill, creating a hazardous situation. Never leave a gas pump, and keep an eye on it until you have filled your tank or pumped the desired amount of fuel.
Not Paying Attention
Drivers often forget how dangerous gasoline can be and how easily it can ignite. We get distracted by cell phones and conversations while fueling our vehicles. This can cause drivers to make costly and hazardous mistakes at the pump. Forgetting to return the pump handle to the gas pump, overfilling your tank, or other errors can occur when you’re distracted.
Distractions can create a dangerous situation for you and all the other customers at the gas station. Always give your full attention to the gas pump and the process of putting gas into your vehicle.
We’re not sure what some people think when they pull up to a gas pump or station. Judging by how some drivers park, it appears they’re coming straight from the DMV with their first driver’s license. Always watch how you park and never block lanes or traffic while filling your tank.
If you want to take this deadly gas station sin even further, leave your vehicle like this for an extended time. Depending on the neighborhood, you may return to find your vehicle has bumps, bruises, and possibly even a new custom, spray-painted paint job.
Smoking Near Pump
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that smoking at gas pumps is an awful idea. You may not spill a drop of gasoline during the process, but the fumes that gasoline emits can ignite. This can result in a dangerous explosion and endangers the lives of everyone at the gas station.
If you need to smoke, wait until you’ve pulled away from the gas station. You may want to end your road trip with a bang, but this certainly isn’t the bang you want.
Forgetting to Use Loyalty Programs
With rising fuel prices, it’s best to take advantage of loyalty programs. Even if you don’t plan on being loyal to the gas station, you can often save $.03 to $.10 per gallon by joining their rewards program.
They may ask for your cell phone number and send you a text or two, but you can enjoy the discount and unsubscribe later. Every bit of savings helps!
Not Shutting off Your Vehicle
Like smoking near the gas pump, not shutting off your vehicle is dangerous. If there are enough gasoline fumes, a running vehicle engine can ignite them. If you hop out of your vehicle to fill up and leave your car running, don’t get offended when someone corrects you.
You may be in a hurry to get back on the road, but you’re not saving time unnecessarily risking your or other customers’ lives. Shut off your engine and remove the keys from the ignition before pumping fuel into your vehicle.
Getting Back in Your Vehicle
It can be tempting to climb into your vehicle while filling up but don’t do it. We understand that it might be too cold or too hot, but you must stand by the gas pump the entire time. This allows you to respond immediately if a situation at the pump requires your attention.
While the risk is minimal, there’s also the chance that you’ll build up static electricity from moving in and out of your vehicle. There have been rare instances where the spark from a driver shutting off the fuel pump handle has caused the gasoline fumes to ignite. Stay with the pump and touch your vehicle to discharge any static electricity.
Stay Safe at Gas Stations
Stopping at gas stations is an inevitable and unexciting reality of driving a vehicle. While you’re probably not going to meet your next best friend while filling up, you can make a new enemy if you commit one of these seven deadly gas station sins.
How others handle your carelessness at the pump in the morning may be enough to ruin the rest of your day. Are there any other gas station sins you’ve observed? Let us know!
Discover the Best Free Camping Across the USA
To be honest with you, we hate paying for camping. There are so many free campsites in America (with complete privacy).
You should give it a try!
As a matter of fact, these free campsites are yours. Every time you pay federal taxes, you’re contributing to these lands.
Become a FREE CAMPING INSIDER and join the 100,000 campers who love to score the best site!
We’ll send you the 50 Best Free Campsites in the USA (one per state). Access the list by submitting your email below: