Removing Your Helmet At A Petrol Station

Removing Your Helmet At A Petrol Station

This little explosive onion crops up every so often between bikers.

Occasionally, you’ll cruise up to a petrol pump, open your petrol tank, slip the tip of your nozzle in, and then…


You look over at the Till Monkey behind their bulletproof glass, and they’re desperately waving at you.

“What???” you mime at them, giving your best French shoulder shrug.

Then Till Monkey wraps his gimpy little gob around the microphone, and mumbles something over the loudspeaker about taking your helmet off.


Because, apparently, all bikers are thieves, who ride off without paying for their petrol.



First off, your average motorcycle petrol tank will hold less than 17 litres of petrol.

If you’re going to steal fuel, why the fuck would you do it on a bike, instead of a car with a 100 litre tank?

More to the point, what’s to stop a car driver wearing a peaked cap, balaclava, or a burka and making off without paying?  Absolutely nothing, that’s what – because whatever you’re wearing in a car, you won’t be asked to undress before they will serve you.

It should also be noted that you HAVE to wear a helmet by law to ride a bike.  It’s not an option.

I’m fine with this, because when that petrol splashed back into your eyes as you’re filling up, it’s quite a good safety function to have a visor to protect you.  In fact, if I take off my protective kit to fill up, and then suffer as a result where my helmet would have protected me, how much compensation do you think I’d get???

Added to this, there is then the question of what you actually do with your expensive and delicate helmet as you fill up?

So, you take your helmet off and then have the option to:

1. Balance your helmet on your seat.
2. Balance it on the handlebars.
3. Balance it on the same tank you’re pouring fucking petrol into!?!
4. Dump it on a fuel-saturated floor/top of pump etc.

I treat my helmet like a newborn baby. I wouldn’t leave a baby on the floor in a petrol station, nor balance it on anything it might fall off.

A newborn wouldn’t be much good for my noggin in an accident, but my helmet is made to do that specifically. I don’t want it weakened by contaminates. That might mean my life.

I don’t know about anybody else, but I don’t sit and trawl through shitty impossible-to-identify pictures of people who steal petrol? So who exactly is using this CCTV footage rather than recording your registration to trace offenders? And aren’t leathers/helmet/bike more identifiable than some blurry video still, anyway?

Not that it would make any difference, because, as demonstrated in the video posted below from the awesome Baron Von Grumble, most bikers at this time of year are wearing 15 layers covering their head beneath their helmet to try to keep warm.

So what are these ‘reasons’ for removing your helmet, again? Manners?

Bullshit, more like. And you can fuck off, if you want me to take my helmet off when I’m filling up. 


Take your helmet off!




6 thoughts on “Removing Your Helmet At A Petrol Station

  1. Absolutely agree, it’s one of the biggest pains in the arse in winter when you have gloves, helmet, scarf, wallet and key and you’re trying to juggle the bloody things around whilst your paying for petrol.
    I do love having a soaking wet helmet and them dumping it all over their nice dry counters and paperwork…serves the bastards right!

    • LOL!
      I’d be tempted to get them to stand next to me and hold it safely…
      A few from The Rev Counter who have been refused carefully take the nozzle off the hook and lay it on the ground. I quite like that idea because it inconveniences the jobsworth who then has to go out to pick the nozzle up after you ride off to somewhere that WILL serve you!

  2. Brilliant, I was just thinking about Barons video, I never actually thought about placement of helmet, I awkwardly but it my arm inside it. I might have a rant the next time someone asks me to take it off, I was thinking of boycotting places that ask me to take my helmet off, but they might just think “Oh that worked, deterred one thief today on his motorcycle!” Perhaps I should walk in, go nuts, then get back on my bike.

    I don’t think people realise that a drop/knock of my helmet costs £150 to replace, because I’m not going to take the chance. I might design a little business card thingy to give to persistent “Till Monkeys”, highlighting your points so people can print it off and give it to them.

    What’s the equivalent to cagers? For the identity factor they should remove any hats/glasses/scarfs/burkas/hoods and for imeding our safety it would have the same affect as asking someone to turn their airbag off before getting out of the car.

    • Ever seen that video of someone filling their car up and then they suddenly get taken out by a HGV wheel that rolls over them? I bet they’d have been glad of a bit of noggin protection!
      Maybe printing those points off and sticking it to their window directly in front of their face will educate them? 😀
      I’m glad I didn’t post this a couple of weeks ago, because The Barons video highlights it all perfectly!

  3. I only use petrol stations that let me keep my lid on – I love going into Tesco and using the pay at the pump option as your paying before you fill up therefore no stealing – going to try the soaking wet helmet on the papers thing cheers – I have removed my lid on a few occasions but not taken my balaclava off as nothing on the tiny sign on the door of the kiosk stating I have to remove this

    • I’ve never even seen a sign about helmets?
      I once had some Texaco Till Monkey shouting something over the loudspeaker at me, but to be honest I couldn’t understand a word he said, anyway! I just flapped my arms a bit and when that didn’t seem to breach the language/mumbling barrier, I very angrilly rode off to what was, incidentally, another branch of Texaco just down the road!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s