Chicago-Area Gas Stations Forced To Operate Under Limited Hours Amid Recent Crime Surge

By: Carissa | Last updated: Nov 11, 2023

The city of Chicago has been faced with roaring crime rates that have left businesses in the area struggling to stay open. The crime surge has even spilled over to neighboring towns, forcing dozens of gas stations in the city of Hammond to operate under limited hours.

The Indiana town, located 25 miles outside of Chicago, has prevented gas stations from remaining open overnight in an effort to combat the volume of illegal activity the area has encountered.

Gas Stations Will Remain Closed After Midnight Until 5 A.M.

They often say that nothing good happens after midnight, and that belief rings true in Hammond. Hammond’s city leaders won a 7-2 vote that will force gas stations to close between the hours of midnight and 5 A.M.


Source: Vecteezy

The new policy will affect 37 local gas stations. City officials say that violent crimes involving firearms have commonly occurred between midnight and into the early hours of the morning when it’s still dark outside.


Hammond’s Mayor Has Had Enough of Ongoing Crime

Mayor Thomas McDermott spoke of the urgency to close gas stations after midnight following a fatal incident that took place at a station at 2 A.M. in July. After an innocent life was claimed in the violent murder, the mayor vowed to make a change for the sake of the community.


Source: The News Gazette

“A lot of the crime taking place in our city happens after hours at gas stations,” he said. “It was time to put my foot down and say this is enough.”

Some Gas Stations Are an Exception to the Rule

The new law goes into effect November 1, with gas stations situated along freeways having the option to not be included in the mandatory closing hours.


Source: Jalopik

Other gas stations are permitted to file for an exemption, but the policy has been made with everyone’s safety in mind. Late night gas station attendants face a higher risk of being victims of robberies and other crimes that could result in serious injury or death.

The Policy Has Raised Some Concerns

While residents of the area are hopeful to reduce the amount of crime, they have their reservations about Hammond’s limited hours of operation for gas stations. Some homeowners fear that people could run out of gas while passing through seedy neighborhoods during the middle of night, leaving them exposed to the threat of imminent danger.


Source: Capital of Indian Trail

“I’d hate to see people get stuck, just in case somebody is traveling and gets off and needs to have gas,” said Hammond homeowner Annette Nordgren. Mayor McDermott hopes to remedy that problem by allowing certain gas stations to remain open.