Reader feedback: Diesel self-serve and driver licenses
We've received a couple of correction/clarification emails. Here they are, with responses:
I think you omitted an important fact from your response about customers pumping their own fuel. I'm pretty sure that diesel is exempt from the rule prohibiting drivers from pumping their own fuel. — Dirk W., Medford
Dirk, you are correct in your assumption that diesel is exempt from the no-self-service law. That's because Oregon's self-service prohibition applies to Class I flammable liquids, which diesel is not. Class I liquids, such as gasoline, have a flash point below 100 degrees Fahrenheit, while diesel's flash point is listed as 149 degrees. The flash point is the temperature at which the vapors from the liquid can ignite. Gasoline's flash point is minus-49 degrees F, nearly 200 degrees lower than diesel.
Thanks for the info on left turns on red. Your Since You Asked column is always useful. Thought you’d like to know that it’s called a "Driver License" not "Driver’s License." Check yours. — Ken R., by email
We did as you suggested, Ken, and discovered that you are right. The Oregon driver's license is labeled a "driver license" on the card itself. That, however, hasn't translated into the common lingo, or into The Associated Press Stylebook, which is a primary journalistic source for all matters grammatical. Without explanation, the Stylebook lists "driver's license(s)" as the correct usage for news stories.
It was suggested by some here at the SYA fount of knowledge that perhaps the "driver license" appellation on the card came from a mistake committed by a state bureaucrat. But in checking, Oregon's Driver and Motor Vehicle Services Division (which still refers to itself as the DMV), is consistent in labeling it a "driver license." The states of Washington and California do likewise.
For now, however, we're sticking with the common usage — and AP-endorsed preference — of "driver's license." Just 'cause the state says it's so, it doesn't make it so.
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