Danger is around every corner. Sometimes we are aware of it, and sometimes it sneaks up as stealthily as old age to surprise us when we are least expecting it. In fact, it is often such a surprise that even in retrospect, we find it hard to believe that we were able to get ourselves into such a terrible situation.
This week, for example, the AP reports that a man who was filling his tank with gas in Huntsville, Alabama, found it necessary to use his finger to remove some gunk from around the opening of his gas tank.
Wednesday afternoon, Dwight Clark, probably in the midst of a normal day in the parking lot of a local pharmacy, found himself in an unthinkable dilemma. His finger went into the gas tank past his knuckle, and he was stuck. Most people laugh just thinking about this situation, making jokes about his pain at the gas pump being not only from the price of gas, but Dwight soon found that he was in real trouble.
By the time the Fire and Rescue Team arrived, Captain Nolen Locke said that people had sprayed WD40 all over the finger and outside of the tank without result. The miracle spray didn’t work, and Dwight was stuck fast. The firemen tried several imaginative ways to release the finger without damaging the truck, but nothing worked. Finally, they gave in to the obvious and cut through the vehicle to release him.
Anyone who thinks this is an isolated case, and one in which they would never find themselves involved, might like to know that on June 9, The Redding Truck Buyer Latest News and Updates reported a similar incident. An alleged gas thief, Mark James Gugin, had to be rescued after getting his left index finger stuck in the gas tank opening of the truck of one of his victims in Redding, California. The finger had gotten caught in a hole above the gas tank filler tube’s collapsible flange. Firefighters had to cut a large hole into the side of an unsuspecting Cottonwood resident’s pick-up truck to release the thief. Police later found three plastic gasoline containers in Gugin’s car.
Clearly, danger can be found even in the most innocuous places. Maybe your mother was right to warn us to be careful every time we left the house. The problem will always be figuring out just where the danger lies.
“Huntsville Man’s Finger Becomes Lodged in Gas Tank’s Opening,” Associated Press in The Decatur Daily 22 June 2007.
“Redding Man Gets Finger Stuck in Gas Tank Tube,” American Truck Buyer Latest New and Updates, June 2007.