Petrol Station explosion - mobile phones

#1
I pulled into a service station yesterday to get fuel on A34 and was in the process of terminating a phonecall on my hands free mobile which is connected via blue tooth to the internal speakers, the window was down. Just as I was saying ta ra go to go etc. One of the staff put his face through my open window and and went into a rant about being blown to kingdom come. Now what I wanted to do was wind the window up and elbow him in the face but I didn't of course.

I don't know anyone who has ever blown up a garage whist on a mobile phone at petrol station, I have heard it's a myth. Anyone know any different ?
 
#2
I think the two poofs on mythbusters tried this a few years ago and concluded it couldn't be done. We have a well known mobile nazi at my local morrisons who scowls out from her armoured booth, waiting to pounce on anybody who even thinks about getting their phone out.
 
#3
If you really want to piss them off fill up whilst smoking a big **** off cuban cigar.
 
#5
I think the two poofs on mythbusters tried this a few years ago and concluded it couldn't be done. We have a well known mobile nazi at my local morrisons who scowls out from her armoured booth, waiting to pounce on anybody who even thinks about getting their phone out.
They tried it on Brainiac as well and they couldn't ignite, IIRC, a caravan full of petrol vapour with several mobile phones all ringing and vibrating at the same time. They did figure out that you were more at risk of setting off an explosion with the static from a shell suit!
 
#6
it's an interesting issue.

on the one side I wouldn't recommend using a powered electronic transmitting device in an area of highly flammable gas.

On the other side the number of petrol stations with mobile phone transmitters in thier signage (great income generator) is on the rise and if you can mount a transmitter that close to the pumps then your phone isn't going to be a major issue.

Saying that I do have a big issue with people holding the phone in one hand and the pump in the other as that is pushing the limit of stupidity a bit far in my mind.

S_R
 

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
#8
It's a myth. I am sure I could google a link but I saw it demonstrated on Brainiac on Sky 1 a handful of years ago. Richard Hamster and the crew saturated (and some) the inside of a caravan with Benz and placed 300 mobile phones inside. From a safe distance, 300 people each phoned one of the phones inside. Nothing.

So they put a wire in the window and got a bloke in a cagoule to rub himself up and down with a balloon, then touch the balloon to the wire.

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM.

Moral of the story: call on mobile phone on forecourt: no risk; filling up car whilst wearing a cagoule: don't do this. No seriously don't. Brainiac did these experiments so that we don't have to.

Edit: what he said above.
 
#9
On the other side the number of petrol stations with mobile phone transmitters in thier signage
I have a mate who works for the co-op in a garage and they have to text the price of the fuel to the whacking big sign not ten feet away from 8 pumps. Bit of a non starter as already proven
 
#10
I'm sure it's no more dangerous than an ignition coil, distributer, and HT leads. Indicators, headlamps etc etc

Edited to add: In Cape Town one would see Braais (BBQs) on the forecourt. Never heard of explosions there.
 
#11
It is total bollocks. Can't happen. Well, nigh-on-highly-*******-unlikely...
There is a vid on Youtube of some Indian guy on top of a petrol tanker, fuel hose in hand, phone rings, and whooompf, goodness gracious, great balls of fire. But it is still not clear if the ignition was caused by the phone.

Kettle on, hobnobs on a plate...

The radio/petrol station bit comes from the jolly good old days of CB radio. Around the time they were legalized, there was a bit of dodgy and illegal gear knocking about. The power amps were poorly designed and had a habit of kicking out a significant transient when the rig was keyed. About the same time, petrol stations where starting to use electronic pumps. The transient from the radio's PA could cause the counter in the pump to reset. So, you could fill your tank, them clear the pump. Free petrol!
The banning of radios from petrol stations was introduced to stop theft. The safety bit was the excuse.
Up until about 2000-ish in Finland, you could see people filling their tanks, fag in mouth, phone cradled on the shoulder.

Drink up, back to work.
 
B

Biscuits_AB

Guest
#13
I pulled into a service station yesterday to get fuel on A34 and was in the process of terminating a phonecall on my hands free mobile which is connected via blue tooth to the internal speakers, the window was down. Just as I was saying ta ra go to go etc. One of the staff put his face through my open window and and went into a rant about being blown to kingdom come. Now what I wanted to do was wind the window up and elbow him in the face but I didn't of course.

I don't know anyone who has ever blown up a garage whist on a mobile phone at petrol station, I have heard it's a myth. Anyone know any different ?
I get the same shit from them when I light up on the forecourt. *******.
 
#14
My understanding of this is that it is possible, but you'll win the lottery first.
 
#15
[video=youtube;6rZyX5QJNkI]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6rZyX5QJNkI[/video]

Lets just get my lighter to check the fuel level!
 
#16
If you really want to piss them off fill up whilst smoking a big **** off cuban cigar.
I was on a shitty microbus in Syria a couple of years back when a soldier got on and started aggressively befriending me, forcing me to chain-smoke his filthy Arab ciggies. The bus pulled off the road and I suddenly realised that I was smoking in a petrol station. I don't think the driver minded though, as when I looked over I saw he was pumping gas with one hand and puffing away with the other.

One day a few months later the BBC carried, for a few hours, reports of an explosion in Damascus that had killed 20+ bus passengers. The story vanished when it emerged that there was no bomb, but rather an explosion at a petrol station caused by a cigarette.
 
#17
I saw a program studying the phenomenon of Petrol station fires a few years ago, it gave forth the following theories.

Its not the Phone, its the static electricity. Many people would get back into the car (especially Women in the US, worried about getting attacked) and use the Mobile. This would generate Static, when they got out they failed to earth themselves on the metal frame of the car, and when they touched the Pump Whoomp!
They also found that old people are less likely to have car fires because they normally touched the car as they got out for support.

So Saying Mobile phones cause fires is like saying Women cause them.
 
B

bokkatankie

Guest
#18
My understanding of this is that it is possible, but you'll win the lottery first.
It would be really annoying if you had just won the lottery, were on your way to collect your winnings, stopped to fill up, phone rings..........
 
#19
The same claim could be made of electronic key fobs then, surely?

'Plip-plip-BOOM!'

Oh, I wish...

'Toyota has recalled all Priuses as a result of an as-yet-unexplained explosion at a petrol station in Surrey. In an unrelated story, the middle lane of the M25 has been declared congestion-free by the Highways Agency...'
 
#20
Can't remember from where I got the idea, but I had the impression that Petrol station's own tills communicate with their pumps wirelessly. and the underlying reason for not wanting people to use mobile handsets is that (back before the handset world switched to encrypted digital communication) there was some danger that your (analogue) mobile signal might muck up the signal from the pump to the till. Obviously, Joe Public wasn't too bothered if the reason was "because it's inconvenient to us", but more inclined to comply if told that use of a mobile might cause an explosion.

Seems like yet another example of keeping it simple for the great unwashed". Remember when PCs had really SLOW screen refresh rates, and if left displaying the same image for a protracted period, the image would get etched into the screen? Joe Public got told "Use a screen saver!" Best part of twenty years later, (With screen technology improved beyond recognition) Joe Public is STILL usng screen savers (but can't remember why) only now, the Data Protection Act requires that you can't just walk away from your terminal and leave it unguarded for any passing Tom, Dick or Harry to see whatever you were working on before your lunchbreak. Different reason for doing exactly the same thing...but if You ask Jow Public "Why use a screensaver?" You'll probably be told "to stop the screen getting etched".
 

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