It’s rare and many motorists don’t take it seriously, but ignoring it could lead to disaster. Static electricity at the gas pump could spark a fire, damaging property and endangering lives. That same spark that occurs when you drag your feet across carpet can be a problem when fueling your car. It’s a message Misti Preston with the State Agriculture Department hopes to get across. Preston says 162 cases of static electricity fires have been reported in the United States. Ten have been reported in Missouri. The State Agriculture Department has advice to reduce the risk of a static electricity fire. Turn off the vehicle when getting gas. Don’t re-enter your vehicle once you begin pumping gas, because static electricity can be built up by getting back into the car and sliding across the seat. It then can be released once you grasp the nozzle, sparking a fire that ignites gas vapors. Children shouldn’t be allowed to pump gas. You shouldn’t smoke or use any kind of match or lighter while pumping gas. Portable containers should be placed on the ground when filling them. If a static electricity fire occurs, leave the nozzle in the car and back away from the fire. Tell the gas station attendant immediately. Preston says this is the time to take precautions, because though rare static electricity fires at the gas pump occur most during dry, cold weather. It doesn’t take that long to fill the tank. Preston advises staying outside the vehicle to greatly reduce any chance of a static electricity fire.
Related web sites:
Petroleum Equipment Institute