OIL: Out of Gas?

In the past 2½ years, Southern California has witnessed the growth of a phenomenon as typical as hot dog stands shaped like hot dogs, the self-service filling station. Since thrifty motorists can save 5¢ a gallon by filling their own tanks, the "serve yourself" stations are spreading all over the Pacific Coast, sell 20 million gallons a month. Major oil companies squirm at the inroads they are making in the sales of regular stations owned or leased out by the majors.

Next week it will be the big companies' turn to watch the gasaterias squirm. Under a new California law,...

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