New Jersey Now Last State Where Drivers Can’t Pump Their Own Gas

By Paul Riegler on 6 January 2018
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Along with laws legalizing recreational marijuana in California and restricting cigarette smoking to those over 21 in Guam at the start of 2018, a new law went into effect in Oregon that relaxed restrictions on self-service pumps, making New Jersey the last remaining state in the union in which drivers are not permitted to pump their own fuel.

As of January 1, 2018, Oregon allows residents of most counties with a population of fewer than 40,000 people to pump their own gas.

Meanwhile, in New Jersey, the Retail Gasoline Dispensing Safety Act of 1949 remains in effect and makes filling one’s own tank illegal. The law was enacted following intense lobbying efforts by service station owners of the day.

Aside from New Jersey and counties in Oregon with more than 40,000 residents, the town of Huntington on Long Island, which bans self-service gas stations, may be the only place in the United States where drivers are prohibited by law from pumping their own fuel.

Jersey residents, however, are proud of their state’s lone status. Some shout it on bumper stickers (“Jersey Girls Don’t Pump Gas”) and a 2012 survey of the state’s voters revealed that 63% want to maintain the status quo.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)