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Protecting Gas Station and Convenience Store Workers from Violence

gas station at night with 2 cars at the pumps

If you are in a situation that feels unsafe: Remove yourself from the situation, if possible. Call 911 for help.
Photo credit: Getty Images

Retail workers in gas stations and convenience stores may face violence on the job. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recently published a Workplace Solutions document: Reducing Workplace Violence in Gasoline Stations and Convenience Stores. Learn what steps employers and workers can take to prevent and reduce workplace violence incidents.


Gas station and convenience store workers are at a higher risk of workplace violence than workers in other industries. These workplaces are often open 24-hours or late at night, and workers may be alone. Workers may also handle cash, making gas stations and convenience stores targets for robbery.

Workplace safety measures, like easy-to-see entrances and exits, windows or shielding that are bullet resistant, or a security alarm or camera system, may help prevent violent incidents. These safety measures and others in the NIOSH document should all be in place to protect workers from violence that may happen at the workplace.

Employers can take the following steps:

  • Post signs that say that workers do not have access to the safe.
  • Keep less cash onsite.
  • Keep store windows clear so law enforcement can see in from the outside.
  • Make sure all emergency exit routes are clear and not blocked.
  • Train workers to safely react to a robbery or violent attack.

Employees can take the following steps:

If something happens at work that feels unsafe, try to get away if you can. Call 911 for help.

  • Be alert!
  • Know where all the exits, alarms, and call buttons are, and where to find emergency information.
  • Watch for signals that may show violence is about to happen.
  • Avoid acting in a manner that could be perceived as aggressive, as it may cause anger to rise.

Find out more about preventing workplace violence at gas stations and convenience stores.