Almost every truck stop I have ever been to has had one common issue, fuel spills on the fuel island. Some of the stops have been doing a great job of cleaning up OUR messes. They have people out with oil and fuel cleaning solvents and steam cleaners or pressure washers trying to keep the islands clean. We, as drivers who use these facilities daily, should do our part to help.
 
I don't think anyone likes to step in oil or fuel then track it back into his or her truck. I'm sure the truck stop owners, employees and the maintenance staff would rather not have to clean up the oily tracks we carry in on our shoes. To me the solution is simple, pay attention to the hoses and nozzles and report any spills, whether you did it or someone else, and don't step in it.
 
I know of one issue that caused me some grief, that was, with the faring skirts we have, the nozzle would fall out of the tank. From what I understand, most diesel pumps pump at a rate of 45-60 gallons per minute. At that flow there is a lot of force that the fuel generates as you are pumping that could lift the nozzle out of the tank. I found another use for that ever-handy tarp strap. Hooking it on the backside of the skirting, the pump nozzle is placed under the strap then into the tank opening. The strap will hold the nozzle in the tank till full, then I can top off as desired. 
 
Using something to help hold the nozzle in the tank while you do your other checks is one step toward keeping the fuel islands cleaner. As I said before, report any spills or leaks on the nozzle or hose to the fuel desk clerk so it can be repaired or cleaned up as needed.
 
Keep a good look out for spills as you are entering the fuel island for spill or oil leaks left buy other trucks. Report these also, a puddle that someone left may get stepped in or driven through, tracking all over the truck stop.
 
Every fuel island I’ve ever been on has trashcans near the pumps. Rather than walking by that empty oil jug, or other trash on the ground, I pick it up and put it where it should have been put in the first place. If the trashcan is full, report that to the fuel clerk also. A trashcan that is running over means the drivers are at least trying and the facility should do something about it.
 
Enough of my little rant about our messes that someone else has to clean up that we could prevent easily. We as professional drivers should take pride in the vehicles we drive and the fuel facilities we stop at. Keeping them clean takes all of us.

Comments (4)

Read These Next...

TRUCK Smart

TRUCK Smart

Not Here - There

August 28, 2014

Comment ()


Good advice on using the tarp strap to secure the nozzle into the tank.

March 04, 2014 7:05:15 AM

Many of the truck stops are out there often with steam cleaners trying to get rid of the fuel spills. I know when ever I get out at the fuel islands I am very careful as they can be very slick. It is the pits when the fuel gets on the bottom of shoes and is brought into the truck.

March 04, 2014 3:12:12 AM

Great article Bob! As we all know diesel on concrete is extremely slick so in addition to the mess of tracking diesel into your truck and into the truck stop there is the real possibility of injuring yourself by slipping on the spilled diesel. It wouldn't take much to cause an injury that requires an unplanned forced staycation. Nope, that's not a typo.
For a lot of the refueling that I do, containment pads are placed below the tanks just in case of a spill. Different forest agencies treat spills differently but the fuel tender operator doesn't want to deal with a 2 gallon hazmat spill on national forest land. That gets expensive in a hurry.

March 03, 2014 13:56:01 PM

Its not much fun to slip and fall on oil or diesel fuel either !

March 03, 2014 8:14:31 AM