Oregon Temporarily Lifts Ban on Self-Serve Gas

Starting immediately, you may be pumping your own gas, and here’s how that happened.

A trade group for Oregon’s gas station owners started lobbying the governor’s office earlier this month, saying some of their employees were not comfortable working directly with the public, given the coronavirus outbreak. Gas station owners, represented by the Oregon Fuels Association asserted they were experiencing staff shortages, and had become concerned about needing to close due to a lack of gas pump attendants.

The concern expressed was: If the gas stations  have to close, how do first responders and other essential personnel get to work.

Today, the governor ordered that Oregonians can pump their own gas. State Fire Marshal Jim Walker said in a press release, “During this unprecedented time of state emergency, we need to ensure that critical supply lines for fuels and other basic services remain uninterrupted.”

The order is in effect until April 11, and gas stations owners are required to maintain a self-serve attendant that can be repurposed to do sanitization and other tasks around the station.  Gas station owners will also have the option to remain open if they cannot find employees to work as self-serve attendants.

The governor’s order is voluntary, and it remains to be seen what changes Mid-Valley gas stations will make.