The Travis County Fire Marshal’s Office would like to remind the community that the only safe way to transport and store gasoline is by using approved portable gas containers.

"In regard to the recent perception of a gasoline shortage, we strongly urge our community to be patient and not over react to the temporary change in gasoline supply to our area,” said Travis County Chief Fire Marshal Tony Callaway. “More importantly, we want to make sure that when you do decide to purchase gasoline and other fuels, it is done in a safe manner that does not endanger your life or the lives of others. There have been reports in our area of people filling up buckets and other inappropriate containers with gasoline and other fuels. This is not only dangerous, it is illegal."

Approved plastic gas containers are made of a special plastic that will not react with gasoline. These containers are red in color and will have an Underwriter’s Laboratories (UL) or the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) stamp on them.

To prevent problems at the pump, here are some safety guidelines for customers to follow when filling gas containers:

  • Use only approved and properly labeled gasoline containers. The gas can should be red in color and have an Underwriter’s Laboratories (UL) or the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) stamp on them.
  • Place the container on the ground before filling to allow static buildup to dissipate. Make sure the filler nozzle touches the rim of the filler opening to help static electricity dissipate.
  • Fill the container only 95 percent full. Leave an air space so the fuel can expand as temperatures increase.
  • Always fill the can manually; never use the trigger lock on the nozzle.
  • Turn off your car’s motor before fueling and extinguish any cigarettes or open flames.
  • Never fill a container inside a vehicle or truck bed.
  • Wipe the can clean before putting it in the vehicle (or hose it off).  Secure the can in the vehicle so it won’t slide around.
  • Never leave a can in your vehicle for extended periods.
  • Don’t breathe gasoline fumes. They are extremely harmful to your health.

It is not safe to fill unapproved plastic bottles, old metal cans, other metal containers or glass containers with gasoline. It is also against the law. Contact the Fire Marshal’s Office at 512-854-4621 with questions or concerns.