Most people know that smoking – or having any kind of flame, for that matter – at a gas station is dangerous. There are huge tanks of flammable liquids in the area, and the fumes from gasoline are also highly flammable. By lighting up, you are putting not only yourself but everyone else at the station in danger.
That’s why when a young man got out of his car at a gas pump in Sophia, Bulgaria, with a lit cigarette in hand, gas station attendant Hristo Dimitrov knew he had to say something. He called out to the man to put out the cigarette, but was shocked by the hostile response he received.
“The second time I told him to quit the cigarette because we could blow up, the reaction was, ‘It is not you who will tell me what to do.’ And I thought there was really nothing more to say to him,” Dimitrov recalled.
Without another word, Dimitrov walked over to the gas pump, pulled out the fire extinguisher, and pointed it at the smoking thug. In seconds, the man, his open car, and his passengers were covered in a white cloud of fire retardant.
The young punk was obviously upset. He got up in Dimitrov’s face and began to scream at him, but the brave gas station attendant, though a little shaken, held his ground.
“I was rather shocked by his unpleasantness and reluctance to understand that something was wrong, behaving as if he were at home or at the bar,” Dimitrov said. “It shook me a little. He tried to tell me to get in and start cleaning their car, how the shirt cost him more than my monthly income. It was quite aggressive, but it was just words.”
Police were called to the scene and Dimitrov was lauded for the way he handled the situation. His boss even bought him a TV set to thank him for his courageous actions.
Despite the unpleasantness of dealing with this punk, Dimitrov hopes the incident taught him a lesson. He said he wants to hear “that he has become a teacher, a firefighter or a chess champion, a boxer, has won two gold medals, or he has done something good, not just part of one funny movie.”
He said he also hopes the video will teach other people that smoking at a gas station is just not acceptable.
“There will be fewer people who will smoke at a gas station,” he said.