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You are Here: Home > ADA Questions > Answered Questions > Obligations of Gas Stations Under the ADA
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The Obligations of Gas Stations Under the ADA

Question:

A relative has a disability that allows him to drive, but makes getting in/out of the car to pump gas difficult. Are there any full service gas stations in the Joliet/Lockport area? Thank you.

Answer:

The only full-service pump in the Lockport/Joliet area that we were able to find is at the Plainfield Shell at 3021 Plainfield Road, Joliet, IL 815-577-7911. Numerous other self-serve stations will provide assistance if the driver calls or honks their horn. Those stations are:

  • Mickey's One Stop, 1415 Plainfield Rd, Joliet, IL 815-729-1420
  • BP 1987 W. Jefferson St, Joliet, IL 815-729-2989
  • Gas City, 2101 E. Laraway Rd, Joliet, IL 815-724-0240
  • Lockport Citgo, 1228 S. State St. lockport, IL 815-838-6600
  • Shell, 518 S. State St, Lockport, IL 815-838-9379
  • Speedway, 314 S. State St. lcokport, IL 815-838-3563
  • Speedway, 1004 E. 9th St. Lockport, IL 815-838-2019
  • Texor Minute Man, 415 New AVe, Lockport, IL 815-838-1818

People with disabilities may find it difficult or impossible to obtain gas for their vehicles because they are unable to use the controls, hose, or nozzle of a self-serve gas pump. At stations that offer only self service, they may be unable to purchase gas. At stations that offer both self service and full service, people with disabilities may have no choice but to purchase the more expensive fuel from a full-service pump.

People with disabilities may require assistance to purchase fuel at self-service pumps. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires gas stations to provide equal access for their customers with disabilities. If necessary to provide access, stations must provide refueling assistance upon the request of an individual with a disability. A service station or convenience store is not required to provide such service at any time that it is operating on a remote control basis with a single employee, but is encouraged to do so, if feasible. Service Stations should:

  • Let customers know (e.g., using signs or notification on or near pumps) that individuals with disabilities can obtain refueling assistance by honking their horn or otherwise signaling an employee. Some stations provide a call button.
  • Provide the refueling assistance without any charge beyond the self-serve price, if the customer wants only fuel. The attendant may provide assistance at a self-service pump or at a full-service pump. In either case, the customer must be charged the self-service price.

Self-service Gas Pumps. The Department of Justice ruled that gas stations with self-service gas pumps must provide equal access to customers with disabilities. Upon request, an attendant must provide refueling assistance and the disabled customer must still get the self-service rate. Gas station management must display signage to let disabled patrons know they may request assistance either by honking or signaling a gas station employee. A gas station or convenience store that sells gas is not required to provide such service at any time it is operating on a remote control basis with a single employee, but is encouraged to do so, when possible.

For more information, you may want to contact the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Civil Rights Division. Here is a link to the DOJ - ADA Website: http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/ada/adahom1.htm. Pasted below is information from a DOJ ADA Business BRIEF called, "Assistance at Gas Stations." Here is a link to that Brief: http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/ada/gasserve.htm.

U.S. Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
Disability Rights Section

Americans with Disabilities Act:
Assistance at Self-Serve Gas Stations

People with disabilities may find it difficult or impossible to use the controls, hose, or nozzle of a self-serve gas pump. As a result, at stations that offer both self and full service, people with disabilities might have no choice but to purchase the more expensive gas from a full-serve pump. At locations with only self-serve pumps, they might be unable to purchase gas at all.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires self-serve gas stations to provide equal access to their customers with disabilities. If necessary to provide access, gas stations must -

  • Provide refueling assistance upon the request of an individual with a disability. A service station or convenience store is not required to provide such service at any time that it is operating on a remote control basis with a single employee, but is encouraged to do so, if feasible.
  • Let patrons know (e.g., through appropriate signs) that customers with disabilities can obtain refueling assistance by either honking or otherwise signaling an employee.
  • Provide the refueling assistance without any charge beyond the self-serve price.

If you have additional questions concerning the ADA, you may call the Department of Justice's ADA Information Line at (800) 514-0301 (voice) or (800) 514-0383 (TDD) or access the ADA Home Page.

The Illinois Motor Fuel Sales Act does not appear to go as far as the federal law, but it doesn't really matter as it is trumped.

Sincerely,

Alan M. Goldstein
The Illinois ADA Project at Equip for Equality