Alanea White

Once upon a time, not too long ago,I was a gas station attendant. During my brief time there I saw some pretty unimaginably unsafe things. 

In the last few months I have heard of at least two explosions involving fuels. Early this March a gas truck in Finlayson exploded causing at least one person to suffer some extensive burns. We at the Star-Gazette are thinking of this person, his family, his doctors and the Emergency Response Team that responded to the scene. I was told about a propane tank explosion somewhere in the Moose Lake area later in March.

With the dry conditions and the extensive number of fire calls all our area fire and emergency response departments are facing, I am reminded that we need to be careful around dry grass and fossil fuels. 

As someone who worked with both gas and propane during my stint as a station attendant, I would like to send out a short reminder that these everyday chemicals are actually really dangerous. Some of the blasé attitude about fossil fuels is their common usage. 

Propane tanks are fairly common place, but not many people understand that they are really pressurized cans of highly flammable gas. Tapping, tipping, tossing, hitting, dropping, rolling, puncturing or rusting can damage the container enough to cause a leak which can lead to big problems. 

These tanks are usually filled off a bigger tank and stored in a cabinet outside. Smoking near these cabinets, or even the large tank is definitely not the best choice. I have seen this at more than location and am  baffled every time. When I was responsible for filling tanks I wouldn’t even bring my cellphone out with me. 

Gas tanks are also supposed to be filled on the ground, not your truck tailgate. Static electricity of any kind could start a fire. I still leave my phone in the car when pumping gas in my car. 

No one wants to be severely hurt by a refined extinct creature. Follow the rules for safe use and remember that just because something is prehistoric, doesn’t mean that you can ignore the safety rules. These rules are usually posted on the gas pump, take some time while you wait for your tank to fill and give them a quick read them. 

Alanea White is the editor of the Moose Lake Star-Gazette. She loves hearing from readers about upcoming community events. Her email is


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