Those Dangerous Gas Clips

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It looks like regulators are getting a little too sensitive about fuel spills. California lawmakers are considering getting rid of the clips used to allow gas station patrons to leave the nozzle flowing without their continuous squeezing:

A story about inconvenience at the gas pump. The State of California wants to do away with the clips that let you fill up your car without holding the nozzle. The recommendation is going out to gas stations after there have been 10 fuel spills statewide link to the clips.

Just 10 spills? California's population is somewhere in the ballpark of 37 million people. If you figure half of them fill up at least once per week using these clips (probably a conservative estimate), that's 962 million annual fill-ups. Taking a quick ratio, you find a 0.000001% rate of failure for these clips. Isn't it lucky that the government is there to save California residents from such an extraordinary risk. 

Read the full story at Fox 40 KTXL Sacramento.

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Daniel Indiviglio was an associate editor at The Atlantic from 2009 through 2011. He is now the Washington, D.C.-based columnist for Reuters Breakingviews. He is also a 2011 Robert Novak Journalism Fellow through the Phillips Foundation. More

Indiviglio has also written for Forbes. Prior to becoming a journalist, he spent several years working as an investment banker and a consultant.
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