Petroleum Equipment Institute is working on a campaign to try and make people
aware of fires as a result of "static" (that is, static
electricity) at gas pumps. They have researched 150 cases of these fires.
The results were very surprising:
Out of 150 cases, almost all of them were women.
Almost all cases involved the person getting back in their vehicle while the
nozzle was still pumping gas. When finished, they went back to pull
the nozzle out. The
started then as a result of static discharge.
Most men never get back in their vehicle until completely finished. This is why
they are seldom involved in these types of fires.
Most had on rubber-soled shoes.
Don't ever use cell phones when pumping gas. (The
RF energy from a cell phone (a radio transmitter) can cause a sparking on bare
metal, much like aluminum foil in a microwave oven.)
It is the vapors that come out of the gas that cause the fire, when connected
In 29 fires, the vehicle had been reentered and the nozzle was touched during
refueling. This occurred in a variety of makes and models. Some resulting in
extensive damage to the vehicle, to the station, and to the customer.
Seventeen fires occurred before, during or immediately after the gas cap was
removed and before fueling began.
get back into your vehicle while filling it with gas. If you absolutely HAVE to
get in your vehicle while the gas is pumping, make sure you get out, close the
door TOUCHING THE METAL, before you touch
nozzle. This way the static from your body will be discharged before you ever
remove the nozzle.
mentioned earlier, The Petroleum Equipment Institute, along with several other
companies now, are really trying to make the public aware of this danger. You
can find out more information by going to http://www.pei.org
<http://www.pei.org> . Once here,
click in the center of the screen where it says "Stop Static".
I ask you to please send this information to ALL your family and friends,
especially those who have kids in the car with them while pumping gas. If this
were to happen to them, they may not be able to get the children out in time.