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A Dying Breed?

Full serve My time in the energy business began at an early age – at fifteen, I had a summer job pumping gas.

Apart from having to wear brown coveralls, I thought being a ‘gas jockey’ was a great job.  I enjoyed being outside and the customers seemed to appreciate having their windows cleaned and receiving help with topping up washer fluid, engine oil, etc.

I didn’t know it at the time, but I was part of a dying breed - collateral damage in the age of technology.

This all came back to me recently during a recent cold snap.  My gas light had been on for a while and I was pushing my luck.  I was driving in an unfamiliar area. I had forgotten my gloves.  It was cold and windy and I would have to brave the elements.

Suddenly I came across a gas station – a full serve gas station.  Feeling like I won the lottery, I pulled in.  The attendant was friendly and despite a line-up of cars and the frigid temperature, took the time to clean my wind shield and ask if I wanted my oil checked.

I pulled away longing for the old days.   I went home and did a search to see if anyone else felt the same way – turns out I’m not alone.  Coming from legacy Suncor, I wasn’t sure what Petro-Canada offered, so I also checked the website and found that there are 70 full-serve sites in Ontario.  Always good to know.

Hats off to you, my full service brothers and sisters.  Keep up the good work.

Jason Vaillant

Photo credit: freeparking

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Lee Krause

Full service is now law in the state of Oregon, and the prices are the same as those in Washington State or California.
The reasons for the law are numerous, but many are due to safety reasons.

·People with training in pumping are better at keeping down fire risk

- It is nearly impossible to enforce safety standards on the driving public

·Seniors and disabled drivers can’t get adequate help at self-serve stations, and are instead forced to find a full-service outlet and pay a higher price

·Oregon’s rainy climate leads to more slick spots at gas stations, meaning higher liability insurance rates

·Decreased maintenance of pumps because they aren’t regularly monitored

·Self-service contributes to unemployment – especially among young people

·Exposure to toxic fumes is a health hazard

·Toxic fume exposure is heightened for pregnant women

·Gas drive-off thefts are cut down with the law

-Children are sometimes left unattended when customers go to make payment

Oregon State Code lays it all out in black and white: only trained employees of service stations are allowed to put so-called “Class 1 Flammable Liquids” into cars.

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