Oregon

Oregon Considers Allowing Grown Adults the Privilege of Pumping Their Own Gas

While New Jersey defends its ban on self-service pumping to the death, Oregon legislators are considering allowing motorists a little more choice.

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New Jersey is getting some well-deserved grief this week as a result of the state's anachronistic ban on motorists pumping their own gas.

Yesterday, political news website Roll Call reported on how U.S. Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D–New Jersey) was forbidden from handling any nozzles during a day he spent working at a service station in his district—part of the congressman's periodic "Josh on the job" tactical gambit to attempt to look like a normal person.

Thanks to a 1949 state law, only a gas station employee with one day's training and a signed certificate from a manager is able to gas up cars. Doing so without the proper qualifications could net one fines as high as $500.

The prohibition on self-service, and Gottheimer's insistence that it is something his constituents are eager to keep around ("Jersey girls don't pump gas" the saying goes) attracted heaps of scorn on Twitter.

This mocking of the Garden State is likely to only get worse as Oregon, the only other state in the union to largely ban self-service, continues to liberalize its gas station regulations.

This week, a bipartisan group of legislators in Oregon introduced a bill that would allow gas stations to designate up to 25 percent of their pumps as self-service. Service stations with less than four pumps would be allowed to have one self-service pump.

The idea is to give those consumers crazy or brave enough to want to pump their own gas the option of doing so.

"Providing the option for self-service would primarily help when pumps are very busy and attendants may not be able to keep up with demand," said Rep. Julie Fahey (D—West Eugene), one of the chief sponsors the self-service bill in an email. "Having a self-serve option would allow drivers who feel comfortable pumping their own gas to do so and get back on the road."

Up until a few years ago Oregon, like New Jersey, had a flat prohibition on self-service. This was often a major inconvenience for late-night motorists traveling through the rural eastern parts of the state, where gas stations often did not have an attendant present 24 hours a day.

In 2015, the state legislature passed a law allowing gas stations in counties with less than 40,000 people to allow self-service between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m. This change was broadened by a 2017 law that allows for self-service at any time of day in those same counties.

Now Fahey and a small clutch of other legislators want to bring that self-service option statewide.

It's likely to be an uphill battle. Many Oregonians reacted less than heroically to the 2017 law, which went into effect in January of last year. When a southern Oregon news station asked what people thought of the change in a now viral Facebook post, commenters complained about everything from not knowing how to pump their own gas to worrying that having to exit their car with "transients" around.

To be sure, these more emotional reactions might not be representative of the state as a whole. And for all the mockery Oregonians received, they're hardly unique in their fear that allowing a certain currently-prohibited behavior will have grave consequences. "We are all Oregonians in one form or another," noted economist Alex Tabarrok in a January 2018 blog post.

Nevertheless, even cooler-headed Oregonians—much like their New Jersey counterparts—are still very defensive of the current restrictions on self-service pumps.

In an email to Reason, Fahey cited public opinion polling from 2014 showing that 44 percent of state residents oppose the ban on self-service, while 46 percent supported it. Some 53 percent of respondents under 45 supported self-service, compared to 33 opposed.

That's a hefty degree of opposition to overcome, but Fahey says her bill strikes the right balance.

"Since Oregonians seem to be fairly evenly divided on this topic, I think a compromise, like the proposal in HB 3194, might be the right solution," said Fahey in an email, saying her bill would "protect full service for those who want or need it, while also giving those who want to pump their own gas the option to do so."

For the sake of freedom and convivence, I hope she's right.

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  1. the state legislature passed a law allowing gas stations in counties with less than 40,000 people to allow self-service between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m.

    What?! No mention of *octane*?

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    3. Ironically, in Oregon I can’t pump my own *car* gas, but when I fly up there in my little plane, I pump my own 100 octane, precariously perched on a ladder…

      1. Me too, Michael Cox. In fact, I hate leaving the job to the airport fuel monkey wherever I am. Besides, it’s a bit tricky sometimes to specify just how much fuel I expect to take off with, given that I can fit 112 gallons into the three tanks, and if they get it wrong, I’m still responsible for it being right.

        That’s 100LL fuel. Low Lead. Not unleaded. The good stuff, though I am looking forward to 100UL eventually becoming available.

        Of course, when I rode my motorcycle (a big Honda with a boxer engine and three gas tanks totaling 8 gallons) through Oregon, I took the pump from the certified professional spilling fuel everywhere trying to get the fuel where it needed to go. He protested, saying that he had to do it, but he didn’t have the cojones to call the cops to confess he didn’t know how to put fuel into a big bike without spilling it on the bike and the rider.

        An Oregonian friend of mine explained that in Oregon, pumping gas was considered a good job.

  2. Not only are NJ residents too mechanically challenged to pump their own gas, the approved attendants need to make at least $15 per hour to do a quality job of it. Otherwise, “oh, the humanity” as one car after another blows up in Lakehurst.

  3. Classic statist thinking. They are afraid to pump their own gas, afraid some dastardly Mexican rapist thug is just hanging around waiting for them, afraid the nasty dirty gasoline will drench them, afraid the clean air inside the car will be contaminated by the dirty foul gasoline vapors outside, who knows why they are so afraid of everything.

    So they force everyone else to suffer along with them.

    Like everything else, if the rest of the public actually did feel the same, there’d be no need for the law. People would wait in line for the full service pumps and gas stations would have no self-serve pumps.

    1. The problem raised by my friend Bob, who moved from NY to Pa. but likes to buy gas here in NJ, is that where self service is allowed. many stns. are only self-service, & since he doesn’t like self-service anything (particularly vituperative about supermarket self-bagging & checkout), he’s bothered by the effective loss of his choice. That’s obviously why this Ore. bill provides that stns. still have gas jockeys even if they allow a limited amount of self-serve.

      Then again, Bob’s not consistent about opposing self-serve purchases. He still fills his own shopping cart at the store, never says he wants to go back to pre-supermarket days where you’d tell a clerk what you want & wait. He’s expressed a preference at times for eating fast food rather than at a waited table.

      He sees himself as a populist, but that basically means he thinks the law should enshrine his exact preferences, which are the way all good people should have it.

      1. Bob also points to self-serve stns. charging just as much for gas. But I think he also fails to take into acc’t the tax difference between NJ and NY & PA.

    2. I think its more that most of them like having their gas pumped but know that, if given the choice, no one is going to *pay* to have their gas pumped. So, like every other state, when the public is allowed to freely choose what they’ll pay for, gas station attendants will go away and no one will have full-service as an option anymore.

      But they don’t want to admit that so they make up safety justifications.

      1. I mean, people still complain about airline deregulation reducing the quality of the flying experience.

      2. I wonder how many of those callers supporting the ban on self pumping were paid by someone who directly benefitted from the status quo, or themselves were beneficiaries of the current system.

      3. “if given the choice, no one is going to *pay* to have their gas pumped. So, like every other state, when the public is allowed to freely choose what they’ll pay for, gas station attendants will go away”

        Pump-jockeys are paid by the station. If the station doesn’t have to have them, the owners will dispense with them and keep what they would have paid in wages for themselves.

        If I were a gas-station owner, I might vote for this. But if I’m a customer, why would this be “better”?

        1. Wrong. I remember when all stations all over the US were full service, and the switch to self-service. The self-serve stations lowered their prices. Some advertised full-service and kept their prices up, but pretty soon nearly everyone was buying at the cheaper self-serve stations. (A

          Gas stations run on a very thin margin; add an employee or increase his pay, and they have to increase the price. Remove an employee, and they will cut the price to be 1 cent less than the station across the street – and if that station can cut the payroll enough, they’ll lower the price 2 cents. This will repeat until both stations have cut all costs possible and cut the prices until they are just barely making a profit.

    3. “They are afraid to pump their own gas, afraid some dastardly Mexican rapist thug is just hanging around waiting for them.”

      To be fair, Pedo Jeffy (Chemjeff) is apparently emuggling In Mexican sexual predators by the truckload. Because open borders no matter what.

      1. Fuck off, Stalinist bitch!

        You walk around here wigging your war boner seeking bloody death and destruction across the continent because you want “your type” to rule the masses.

        Why the fuck does a Republican tribalist as yourself want to haunt a libertarian website?

        Go back to watching your kiddie porn, Shiteater.

        1. Hi PB. You can piss off too. You kiddie raper bastard.

      2. Fuck off, you Stalinist bitch!

        You wiggle your tumorous war boner around a libertarian website calling for political purges and death to anyone who is not part of your cult.

        Go back to downloading your disgusting kiddie porn, Shiteater.

        1. So Peter Duncan is chemjeff which leads me to believe the Hihnswarm was also chemjeff as I had previously classed Peter Duncan as a Hihndrone.

          1. Or he’s PB. PB came at me like this before.

  4. Self service started showing up in reaction to the last oil shock, circa 1979. Gas per gallon was strikingly cheaper if you did it at the pump it yourself island, and consumers picked the self-service island so often, most stations stopped offering anything else. In fact, they had to pass laws in a lot of states that require the station to send someone out to pump gas for handicapped drivers.

    “In an email to Reason, Fahey cited public opinion polling from 2014 showing that 44 percent of state residents oppose the ban on self-service, while 46 percent supported it. Some 53 percent of respondents under 45 supported self-service, compared to 33 opposed.”

    The problem with opinion polls is that they don’t come with price signals attached like markets do. It doesn’t cost the survey respondent to say they want full service, but given the choice between a lower price per gallon for self-service and a higher price for full service, all the market data suggests that people will disproportionately choose self-service in a landslide.

    Additionally, Oregon may find that the lower price of gas for self-service gives them more leeway to tax the fuck out of gasoline, which is something I suspect a lot of Oregonian commies would support if it were cast as a way to combat global warming.

    1. I was just visiting family in Oregon and the gas is so much cheaper than what it is in California. The cost of an attendant is just noise compared to the taxes imposed by the state.

      1. not an argument for attendants. just an arugment against predatory taxation as practiced in CA.

      2. Yeah but people are insanely sensitive to gas prices. Ridiculously so. So if someone could cut 3.5 cents a gallon off their price by cutting the attendant people would drive past 5 gas stations and wait in line for that one.

        1. “people are insanely sensitive to gas prices”

          A gas station is the only place you regularly shop that posts the full price list outside in 3-foot high letters. Of course, that is helped by having only one or two products to sell in only two to four grades (at most, regular, intermediate, premium, and diesel), and by those grades now being so standardized and regulated that in case of a shortfall in deliveries, a store for one brand will call one of the other brands for a truckload to get them through. I think people would be equally fanatical about buying the cheapest groceries, except that it’s too much work to compare prices for your whole shopping list, and then to drive all over town and buy one or two items at each of the supermarkets. And I know that grocers would sometimes post a price for milk below their cost, figuring that when people came to their store to buy milk, they’d buy other items that were profitable.

          In the 1970’s and 80’s, Lonnie Alsup built a chain of convenience stores across the southwest. Each one had two (and _only_ two) gas pumps, and the price was always 1 cent less than the lowest-priced competitor. Alsup figured he was in the grocery business, not the gasoline business, and the gas pumps were a loss leader. A guy might wait in line a half hour for one of those pumps, and his wife would come into the store and shop.

          1. As for the different gas brands: my father ran a Shell station in the 1950’s; he was convinced that Shell had better additives at that time, and hated to have to buy anything but Shell when traveling, even though Shell usually was a few cents higher. But fifteen years later he decided all brands had upgraded to match Shell’s quality, and wouldn’t look at anything but the price. He usually pumped his own gas and checked his own oil even before self-service; he had _trained_ many young men to do this, so he wasn’t going to wait for service.

      3. California may have higher prices, but you do have to admit we have poorer roads so I guess it all works out.

      4. “I was just visiting family in Oregon and the gas is so much cheaper than what it is in California.”

        The gas in California isn’t the same as the gas in Oregon. California regulates gas so much, they get their very own supply.

    2. >> Self service started showing up in reaction to the last oil shock, circa 1979.

      Oh, it was around long before that. But full service stations were about the full *service*. You got the gas pumped, but you also got the oil checked and the windshield cleaned. And depending on where you were, you didn’t even have to tip. People could pump their own gas if they wanted to. Most stations (at least in my native California, crazy progressive as it was) had a self service pump.

      What the oil “crisis” did was get rid of the last of the full service pumps. But self service pumps had already been there.

    3. “Oregon may find that the lower price of gas for self-service”

      You don’t get lower prices from self-service. You get to pay the same, and also get out and do it yourself.

      Walmart allows you to use self-checkout. Do they give you a lower price for using it?

      (Price comes from supply and demand, not cost of goods sold)

  5. Without Jersey we wouldn’t have The Boss, Bon Jovi, The Sopranos, Snooki, or Chris Christie, so why don’t you just go fuck yourself, you mook fuck.

    1. Let’s not omit Frank Sinatra, please.

    2. “Without Jersey we wouldn’t have The Boss, Bon Jovi, The Sopranos, Snooki, or Chris Christie,”

      So there’s no downside to losing Jersey. And the Poconos would be on the ocean.

    3. 1 outta 5 actually worth a shit ain’t so bad I guess. Shame it was the fictional movie one and not a real person. Keep trying Jersey!

      1. Shame it was the fictional movie one and not a real person.

        So, Snooki?

  6. >>>This mocking of the Garden State is likely to only get worse

    been going on since Moses. can get worse?

  7. It’s banned because the act of shoving the nozzle into the tank is too sexual for them to handle.

    1. Don’t forget to tickle that button on the way in…

      1. What about the cheerleaders who chant
        “That’s alright, that’s ok
        You’re gonna pump our gas someday!”

        Will someone think of the cheerleaders?

        1. I do. Frequently

  8. While driving through Oregon years ago, they had a referendum on pumping gas. A local talk show was discussing the issue. I was frankly amazed at the number of callers that where against it. “We’ll blow ourselves up!” was the common refrain. Until finally one caller came through…

    “Look, pumping your own gas is easy and safe. Even those Californians can manage it without burning down their gas stations. And we all know how much smarter we are then they!”

    1. Yeah, it is amazing the disinformation they have there. Individuals I talked to were afraid you’d always get smelly has on you when you touch the pump, and happy to pay extra for extra employment opportunities. But not interested in market choice to exercise as a preference.

      1. People in Portland have a lot of stupid ideas. They’re not quite as idiotic as Seattle, but not far off.

        1. Hey don’t make it a challenge! They will rise to it!

          The most frequent reason is it would increase unemployment. My point is then we should not be pumping gas. We should use an eye dropper. Or we should get rid of cars all together and do horse and buggy. Then we would employ more people. (farmers for hay, shipping it, and a lot of clean up!)

      2. “happy to pay extra for extra”

        They don’t actually have to pay extra. This is a common misconception.

    2. Every time I get gas in Oregon I cringe when some young person comes out to pump my gas. I have asked what else they are doing with their lives, you know getting an education and such. The usual answer is that I am a full time gas pumper. What a waste of life. These pumpers are usually mid-20 somethings and should be acquiring skills or working as apprentices, but instead they do brain-dead work in the name of helping liberals virtue signal that they are doing something.

  9. How insane is it that they can’t just let gas stations decide for themselves? If customers demand full service that much, surely it would be a market advantage to offer it.

    1. What part of “dey terk er jerbs” do you not understand?

  10. I’d like the choice of pumping or not. Sometimes I don’t want my hand to smell like gas.

    1. Didn’t know we were still doing phrasing.

      1. Oh we are totally doing phrasing. It helps keep things inline while we are all exposing our beefs here to each other.

        1. *snort*

  11. Providing the option for self-service would primarily help when pumps are very busy and attendants may not be able to keep up with demand…

    As long as you concoct a plausible reason to return to your citizens a choice that 96% of the country already has.

  12. I’m in California and there is one station where i live that still has an attendant so when i had a medical foot issue i went there it was great but that was my choice to go there.

    1. The high-rent areas of South Florida still have full-service stations (at about a 30 cent per gallon premium) where the attendant will even offer to pull your car up to the pump.for you. This is a service for all the 112-year old geezers in their Cadillacs and Lincolns who have been legally blind for 15 years and legally dead for 3 and couldn’t be trusted to get within 15 feet of a gas pump without ramming into it and probably have no idea they’re at a gas station and not a Pat Boone concert.

    2. I have zero problem with full service options as long as they are a function of the market and not government mandates.

      1. Approximate number of Oregonians who care what your opinion is: 0

        1. That’s ok. i don’t give a fuck about their opinions either. Or yours for that matter Pollock.

          1. No shit? But mine is right.

            1. No. You’re not right. You’re pretty much never right. Stupid Pollock.

  13. New Jersey legislators apparently think their constituents are too stupid to be trusted with the responsibility of pumping their own gas. And yet those same constituents are trusted with the responsibility of electing New Jersey legislators.

    The obvious question this raises is whether New Jersey legislators know more than their constituents or less.

    1. New Jersey’s legislators are their own constituency and could care less what the general public wants.

      1. could care less

        How much less could they care?

  14. I’d ask whether residents of New Jersey are allowed to mow their own lawns, but that would mean assuming that grass can actually grow in New Jersey.

    1. That green stuff oozing up out of the lawn ain’t grass.

    2. The Garden State moniker is right up there with Ministry of Peace or City of Brotherly Love

    3. I wonder if they’re legally required to use electric lawnmowers. Because otherwise they’d be filling their own mowers with that dangerous gasoline stuff.

  15. This will all be a moot point in a decade or two. I’m an Oregonian, and I haven’t even been to a gas station in over a year.

    That’s one of the things I really like about my electric car.

    1. It really won’t. Electric cars are expensive, inefficient and highly, highly toxic. We’re you aware that the manufacture of your electric drivetrain frontloads the equivalent of eight years of emissions from a comparable ICE version of your vehicle? And where do you think all that electricity is going to come from if a significant percentage of trucks and automobiles use electricity? There is no excess capacity in America’s energy production to absorb that increase in demand.

      Please think before you make such ignorant statements.

      1. “It really won’t. Electric cars are expensive, inefficient and highly, highly toxic.”

        That must be why there are so many of them at the Country Club.

        ” where do you think all that electricity is going to come from if a significant percentage of trucks and automobiles use electricity?”

        Most of Oregon’s electric production is hydroelectric. The federal government earns a big pile of money every day from owning the dams, and their electric production capacity.

        1. “That must be why there are so many of them at the Country Club.”

          Is that where you sweep up near the valet entrance?

          “Most of Oregon’s electric production is hydroelectric. The federal government earns a big pile of money every day from owning the dams, and their electric production capacity.”

          I live in the NW and certainly know more about all of that than you ever could Pollock. However, you are cherry picking and trying to hide the truth. That the country as a whole does not a significant excess grid capacity to power electric cars if they replace ICE vehicles in any significant percentage.

          Glad to straighten you out Pollock. As usual.

          1. “I live in the NW and certainly know more about all of that than you ever could Pollock.”

            Wrong, again. but you’re used to that, and it doesn’t seem to bother you.

            1. You have such a tiny little mind Pollock. You might as well just stop, as this is far beyond your limited comprehension.

        2. “That must be why there are so many of them at the Country Club.”

          If you’re rich enough for the country club, you’re rich enough to blow $50K on a fad or virtue signaling. This is good for innovation; if you can make your invention seem fashionable, you can sell it to a small group for a high price while you work out the problems with reliability and producibility.

      2. Oregon has it all figured out. When enough of them buy electric cars, they’ll stop selling electric power to California and let them fry in the sun.

        Now, I have no idea why any Californian would buy a car that can’t even make it to the border when the power goes out. Darwin is so slow-acting…

  16. I live somewhat south of the middle of the US and we have had the right to pump our own gas for as long as I have been old enough to drive and that has been very long time now.

  17. At a gas station in New Jersey I once saw the attendant smoking a cigarette while standing in a puddle of gasoline filling a car’s gas tank. I am deeply skeptical of the idea that requiring attendants to pump gas is safer than allowing drivers to do it.

    1. The worst he could have done is set his shoes on fire. Pumps don’t explode like they show in the movies.

      1. Gas pumps don’t explode like in the movies, but they certainly can catch fire, as can cars.

        1. Sure, but it would take a big puddle to immolate the turd, or a car for that matter. i could definitely see him getting his shoes on fire though.

          1. … then he stomps and splashes…

  18. Dumb law, but “privilege” is not the word I’d use…

  19. New Jersey is right to ban all people from self serving pumping.
    After all, people who pump their own gas usually end up paralyzed, amputated arms and halitosis as numerous medical research has indicated.
    Therefore, the the sake of the unenlightened masses and their health, it would be prudent for the Politburo to ban all self serving pumping and allow only highly trained, specialized and informed army of government technicians at every gas stop to provide this service to show not only all us little people, but indeed the people of the world, what government can do for them.
    This message has been approved by the Ministry of Self Serving Pumpers.

  20. As an Oregon resident who has lived in several other states and pumped plenty of gas, I’m very happy not to pump my own gas, and sit in the car when it’s raining, not risk splashing gasoline on my clothes, and enable employment for gas station employees.

    Yeah, I thought it was weird when I first move here. But now I love it. Why would anyone want to pump their own gas??

    1. Note that ALL the criticism comes from people who lack experience with not having to pump their own gas.

      1. No Pollock, it doesn’t. I’ve spent plenty of time in Oregon, usually driving. So I’m well aware of the difference. It’s just that your observation is stupid, as usual.

        1. Correction: ALL of the criticism comes from people who lack experience with not having to pump their own gas, OR they are VERY stupid.

          There. I took you into account, Shithead.

  21. ” When a southern Oregon news station asked what people thought of the change in a now viral Facebook post, commenters complained about everything from not knowing how to pump their own gas to worrying that having to exit their car with “transients” around.”

    1. Do Oregonians ever drive out-of-state? Do they have to hunt down full-service stations when they do? Are such stations plentiful in, for example, northern California?

    2. Do Oregonian gas pumpers receive extensive training in dealing with ‘transients’?

    1. The gas station managers know what to do with ‘transients’ – hire them!

  22. Aren’t they, the progressive left, concerned about increasing unemployment among low skilled and low intelligence people by allowing people to pump their own gas?

    1. The push for pump-your-own-gas usually comes from two sources: New arrivals, who are used to pumping their own gas, and rural folks, who aren’t numerous enough that gas stations in their areas stay open for extended hours. The latter group got their exception to the statewide law (the “exception” covers around 3/4 of the state’s territory, but maybe 10% of the population.)

      The arguments raised are many. Some present a “freedom” argument, phrased as “freedom to pump your own gas” on one side, and “freedom to not have to” on the other side. Some believe, incorrectly, that the price of gas would be lower if pump-your-own prevailed. Some note, correctly, that the original justification for limiting pump-your-own-gas is totally bogus.

      What it comes down to is that Oregonians have learned to appreciate not having to get out of the car, in hostile weather, to pump gas, and would prefer to keep it that way.

      1. Oregonians gas station owners should have the right to run full and self serve. Oregonians should support stations that offer full-service.

        1. You assert this, but don’t bother to support it. If a gas station owner wants to offer full and self-serve, they’re welcome to… in all their stations that aren’t in Oregon. The ones that choose to operate in Oregon, choose to do so under Oregon’s rules, which means enough full-time attendants to pump all the gas.

          1. Pollock, you assert all kinds of stupid shit and never support it. So you shouldn’t talk, at all.

            1. I’m disappointed that you aren’t even TRYING, Shitty.

              1. Trying to do what Pollock? Wade through your moronic statements? Why bother? You aren’t really saying anything and don’t really grasp how a business runs.

  23. Why would anyone want to pump their own gas in the freezing rain? If your state goes self-service, good luck finding anyone to fill your tank for you, ever, anywhere. From that standpoint, it’s an invitation to market failure.

    1. “Why would anyone want to pump their own gas in the freezing rain?”

      So we can keep driving. The gas stations around here all have roofs over the pumps.

      1. “The gas stations around here all have roofs over the pumps.”

        But apparently, no wind.

    2. Why would anyone want to drive in the freezing rain? You can just get to where you are going using that wonderful mass transit. It might take over an hour to get someplace in that bus that you could get to in your car in 10 minutes, but you didn’t have to drive.

      1. “You can just get to where you are going using that wonderful mass transit.”

        In freezing rain, they turn off the trains. (Portland has exactly one subway stop.) And (amazingly enough) some Oregonians don’t live in Portland.

      2. Does Oregon ever have freezing rain? I have only spent a few months in Oregon, but I’ve never seen anything that we’d call “bad weather” in northern Michigan. As far as I can tell, the coast and the Sound lack “freezing” and the Willamette Valley lacks rain. That leaves the mountains, where I’d expect freezing rain, heavy snow, and extremely cold weather to occur regularly, but these are the rural areas where self-serve stations without even one attendant are allowed. It sounds to me like the country folk are happy to be able to pump their own gas in weather conditions worse than the city folk ever see.

        As a Michigander, I’ve pumped my own gas in freezing river, snow blowing horizontally, and -20 F temperature. But mostly I plan ahead and fill the tank in better weather. _Driving_ in those conditions is much worse than pumping gas, but more difficult to avoid.

  24. Used to have no self service in Ohio years back, then when self service was approved there was a price reduction for self serve as apposed to full serve.
    When people realize that self serve gas is cheaper than full serve perhaps they will change their mind.

    1. It was typically that way too in Washington years ago. Now there are almost no full service stations.

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  26. I stopped at a gas station and filled up before I realized the station was closed and empty. Pumping gas without an attendant on duty is illegal in Illinois (and presumably everywhere else). I had always assumed gas stations shut the pumps off when they were closed.

    1. Oregon has a rural/urban split. In the rural areas, the residents can use cardlock gas stations (basically, the gas station is a private club that doesn’t serve non-members). They are generally unmanned 24/7.

      1. The one thing that you’ve said that is correct. Works that way in WA too.

  27. 100% of people who pump their own gas DIE.

  28. Gas pumpers lives matter. Don’t turn them into an endangered specie.

  29. People opposed to self-service could hire a gas pumper. Except they should pay them at least $15 an hour, plus benefits. Of course I have mixed feelings about this. My first student type job was pumping gas and look where it got me. Posting comments on reason.com.

  30. Yeah, the usual answer is that I am a full time gas pumper. What a waste of life!!!

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  32. Start working at home with Google! It’s by-far the best job I’ve had. Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this – 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour. I work through this link, go to tech tab for work detail.
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  33. The push for self-serve gas comes from recent out-of-state arrivals. It used to also come from people in rural communities, but they already got their exception.

    There has been significant influx of out-of-staters in recent years, and every biennium they make waves about wanting to pump their own gas. The ones who stay usually change sides with time. Sometimes they talk about implementing pump-your-own-gas via statewide initiative… all such efforts have failed, usually because of not being able to collect enough signatures to qualify for the ballot.

    I’d be surprised if pump-your-own-gas becomes law statewide.

    Also unlikely… a sales tax. Oregon doesn’t have one, and politicians keep floating the idea of a sales tax, only to quickly retreat when they realize just how strong the opposition is.

  34. No doubt that AOC will eliminate all self serve functions and robots so that everyone can have a job in her new world vision of Marxism.

    1. Robots are a real threat to the economy. That’s why I consider it so problematic to receive crappy, idiot robot service from human beings. They’re screwing up our culture and the economy.

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  36. I was driving through Oregon and I just rolled into a gas station, got out, paid at the pump, filled up and rolled right out of there with NO IDEA you’re “not allowed” to self-serve your gas. The guy was doing something else, I guess.
    I think it’s great for places with severe weather. Go ahead and keep young people employed. Older people and professionals like to have their gas pumped by someone else when they’re wearing nice clothes, not feeling well, going to a business meeting. Keep everything the same, just have a full service lane and 2 self-service ones. Everybody happy.

  37. “Keep everything the same, just have a full service lane and 2 self-service ones. Everybody happy.”

    Except now you’re paying the attendant to NOT pump gas for customers. That guy’s going to get the axe, and ALL the pumps will be self-serve. The fact that all the gas stations have to have attendents keeps any of them from obtaining a competitive boost to profits from cutting the staff. Keeping a full staff is a cost of doing business.

    1. In other words, there is no significant demand for full service gas stations once it becomes a function of the free market, and not government decree.

  38. my buddy’s mother-in-law makes $72/hr on the . She has been without a job for ten months but last month her paycheck was $21863 just working on the for a few hours. Read more on this site

  39. lol this always comes up in the spring. i live in nj and it is great pulling up to the gas pump when it is 20 degrees out, crack the window and hand the guy a $20. it is very rare to find full serve in other states. only law i do enjoy.

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  42. While I tend to be against laws like Oregon’s gas-pumping regs, I do find myself torn. CA spends hundreds of millions of dollars providing training or artificially creating jobs so that young people will have a better chance at learning basic job skills — and by “basic,” I mean the ability to get to work on time and be ready to work. From my perspective, the law in Oregon provides that, without the government bureaucracy and higher taxes.

  43. A couple comments about pumping gas in Oregon. The first time I drove through I was motorcycling. The attendant came up and said something like, “hey, we’re supposed to pump gas for everybody, but I know you guys don’t like anybody filling up your bike so if you want to you can fill it and I’ll just stand here like I’m doing it.” So, that’s what we did. Apparently he’d had enough of bikers threatening to break his fingers if he got a drop of gas on the custom paint job. The next notable time was in rural Eastern Oregon before the law change after 8 p.m. Gas stations in town after town were closed for the day with no pay-at-the-pump. I was prepared to sleep in the moving van for 8 hours until they opened until a guy in a pickup drove by. Apparently he lives nearby and kept several 5-gallon containers of fuel in the bed of his truck to sell to stranded motorists for $50 apiece. Free market solution to a government-imposed problem. He did fill the tank for me though. Oh, and another time, the attendant kept my debit card. I drove off before realizing it, went back and went inside to get it and they claimed they didn’t have it. I called my credit union on the spot to cancel it and the people looked all annoyed that I was depriving them of their right to use my card for additional unauthorized purposes. Screw Oregon. Go Sounders!

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