A new bill has been introduced into Alberta’s provincial legislature that aims to protect gas station employees from gas-and-dash drivers.
The bill, An Act to Protect Gas and Convenience Store Workers, amends the Occupational Health and Safety Code to make pre-paying for fuel mandatory, according to a release from the province.
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This introduction comes after the death of five gas station workers and serious injury of three others over the past three years in gas-and-dash incidents.
If passed, the bill would also ensure that violence protection plans be put in place at all retail fuel and convenience stores.
“As Albertans, our hearts break when we see incidents of violence involving workers,” said Minister of Labour Christina Grey, in the release.
“This legislation would better protect workers and prevent violent incidents from happening in Alberta.”
The law would go into effect on June 1, 2018 if passed, and for stations where pay-at-the-pump technology is not available, the bill would require customers to deposit cash or a credit card before fuelling.
According to the release, fuel theft incidents rose from 2011 to 2015, with more than 4,000 fuel thefts across Alberta in 2015 alone.
These are the bill’s other requirements as outlined in the release:
- Safe cash-handling procedures and minimal amount of cash available to workers.
- Video monitoring and good visibility within and outside premises.
- Where the retail space is open to the public between 11 pm and 5 am:
- Time-lock safes that can’t be opened during those hours.
- Limited quantities of certain items such as cash, lottery tickets and tobacco available during those hours.
- Visible signs indicating to the public that the retailer uses time-lock safes, has video monitoring and carries limited quantities of certain items.
- Personal emergency transmitters for employees working alone.
- Worker training in all aspects of the violence-prevention plan.