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Should I rant? Cell phone at the gas pump.
Old 05-23-2018, 10:25 AM   #1
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Should I rant? Cell phone at the gas pump.

I am sure I have seen it before, but for some reason yesterday when I saw it I was really annoyed. I was pumping gas and the guy behind me was doing the same, talking on his cell phone. I stared at him and he moved away from the pump to the other side of his car.
Does it really matter? Is there really much danger? And why did it annoy me this time, surely I have seen it before.
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Old 05-23-2018, 10:37 AM   #2
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Snopes and ABC News says there is no more danger with a cell phone than static electricity.

You are probably more likely to start a fire by getting back into your car when it is cold out while the pump is running. When you do that you can build up static electricity.
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Old 05-23-2018, 10:38 AM   #3
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Before you rant:

watch this -

https://www.discovery.com/tv-shows/m...ation-minimyth

or read this -

https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/fuelish-pleasures/
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Old 05-23-2018, 10:39 AM   #4
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Not dangerous.
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Old 05-23-2018, 10:44 AM   #5
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I, personally, IMHO, do not think cellular phone use will start any problems at a gas pump. I do not do it myself because, as a male human, I cannot do two things at the same time and be satisfied with how either of them works out. My wife can talk and fully function as a human concurrently. Oddly enough, she is very quiet and does not speak much. I, OTOH, have never had an unspoken thought.

I can not even use a hands-free phone while driving. When I do (Always when I have received a call...) I usually cannot remember the driving part or even seeing any other cars. I do not speak for others but I do not call and drive as I can't do it safely enough for my level of satisfaction.

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Old 05-23-2018, 10:46 AM   #6
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Least they weren't driving.
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Old 05-23-2018, 10:49 AM   #7
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Aside from open flames, the most dangerous thing someone can do is get back in their car, slide on the seat, and come back out and put their hand on the pump.

So, get annoyed and stay away when you see someone put the pump on auto lock and get back in their car.

The snopes article discusses this a bit. It is really rare, but a possible cause of fires. I think the whole "insulated pile" of filling gas cans on insulated pickup truck beds sounds more dangerous. The whole pile of different materials reminds me of science experiments. So, I follow the suggestion and put the can on the ground.
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Old 05-23-2018, 10:54 AM   #8
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I'm sure he was a very important person conducting very important business that simply could not wait.
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Old 05-23-2018, 10:55 AM   #9
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I'm sure he was a very important person conducting very important business that simply could not wait.
Isn't that the reason everyone uses a cell phone?
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Old 05-23-2018, 11:04 AM   #10
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A cell phone user at a gas pump would not scare me but this sure did -

I'm a school crossing guard and in the mornings I park at a medical building that is next to a gas station. A woman and her 3 year old granddaughter walked to the pumps with a small gas can. She knew to set it on the ground before filling it.

Then they went into the gas station store and she bought a pack of cigarettes. I see her buying cigarettes often. While carrying the gas can she walked with the girl to the edge of the station property, sat the girl down on the curb, placed the full gas can on the ground next to her granddaughter and opened the pack of cigarettes.

Then she got out a lighter and stood right there next to a full gas can and child and lit her cigarette! By this time I had my hand on my phone just in case there was an explosion!
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Old 05-23-2018, 11:11 AM   #11
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I would think that flatulence at the gas pump would be more dangerous than a cell phone
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Old 05-23-2018, 11:11 AM   #12
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Was it a black BMW convertible?
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Old 05-23-2018, 11:14 AM   #13
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I see her buying cigarettes often.
Cigarettes will kill you.
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Old 05-23-2018, 11:19 AM   #14
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The technical answer is, unless the cellphone is " Intrinsically Safe " , it should not be even powered up in the vicinity.

The real answer, gasoline is heavier than air and will generally not be present at ear level unless there is a spill with wind etc. Nothing to worry about IMO, especially if your state requires vapor recovery type hoses/ nozzles.

I must have seen dozens of people over the years when smoking among adults was prevalent , pumping gas while smoking a cig, and I was not worried then, even with the dire warning signs posted at the pumps.

I would be more concerned with noise pollution having to listen to the conversation LOL
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Old 05-23-2018, 11:29 AM   #15
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Isn't that the reason everyone uses a cell phone?
Well, there's that AND pics of cute cats!
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Old 05-23-2018, 12:08 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by king smoothie View Post
I am sure I have seen it before, but for some reason yesterday when I saw it I was really annoyed. I was pumping gas and the guy behind me was doing the same, talking on his cell phone. I stared at him and he moved away from the pump to the other side of his car.
Does it really matter? Is there really much danger? And why did it annoy me this time, surely I have seen it before.
i would say that your greater danger is staring at this person. He may not like this.

Ha
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Old 05-23-2018, 12:10 PM   #17
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I agree it just isn't anything to worry about. Let's put this in perspective:

A cell phone is a low voltage device. Nothing it in really generates a spark, though some vibrators are (were? might be old tech now), motors with an off-center weight, and a brushed motor does produce some tiny sparks at the commutator, these would be very tiny, a few volts maybe, and well encased inside the (now mostly water-resistant, so therefore pretty air-tight) cases. Maybe some higher voltages at nodes on the RF filters, but no sparks there.

Compare that to a car idling as it pulls up to the pump. The ignition system produces sparks of around 30,000 volts, about 20 of them every second. And those wires are under the hood, far more exposed than the inside of a cell phone. Think of the thousands of cars that pull into gas stations every hour, every day, for years, decades - and I've never heard of a report of an explosion from the ignition system of an idling car. And in some not-so-well maintained cars, those wires might have breaks in the insulation, with occasional sparks jumping to ground. Any car-person has seen this.

So worry about the static electricity from getting out of the car. And as shown in those videos - learn that if there is a fire, do not pull the hose out, get the pump turned off.

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Old 05-23-2018, 12:14 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by haha View Post
i would say that your greater danger is staring at this person. He may not like this.

Ha
About 15 years ago, I pull up to the pump, and a gruff looking guy two pumps down lights up a cigarette while he's pumping his gas. I ask him as nicely as I can to put out the cigarette.

He gives me some kind of "eff-off' response. Sure, a part of me wants to get into it with him, but then I figure if he's stupid enough to light up while pumping gas, that cause-effect and consequences probably don't really work their way through his brain like most normal people. So I just drove off to fill up later.

Felt like a wimp, but I stayed out of the hospital.

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Old 05-23-2018, 12:49 PM   #19
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A few years ago I was behind some doofus filling his tank and yakking on his cell phone. When he was done, he absent-mindedly laid the nozzle on the ground and drove off, all while blabbering away. I picked up the nozzle and put it where it belonged. Now THAT was annoying!

Or maybe he was a drive-off stealing gas and making it look so natural it didn't even occur to me until the next day.
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Old 05-23-2018, 01:23 PM   #20
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A few years ago I was behind some doofus filling his tank and yakking on his cell phone. When he was done, he absent-mindedly laid the nozzle on the ground and drove off, all while blabbering away. I picked up the nozzle and put it where it belonged.
That might have been a mistake.

If he paid with a credit or debit card, then you should have pumped gas into your tank. Pumps don't stop charging until replaced in the holder.
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