Pain at the pump: gas prices surge to new highs
Published 9:15 am Saturday, March 12, 2022
With gas prices surging higher, local residents are feeling the pain at the pump.
According to gasbuddy.com, average gas prices across Alabama have increased almost a full dollar over the past month. On February 10, the average cost per gallon was $3.21. At midday Friday, the average cost was $4.17 per gallon.
AAA.com reported the average gas cost in Covington County is $4.04 per gallon, which is below the state average of $4.17 and the national average of $4.33.
Across Andalusia on Friday, gas prices ranged from $3.94 per gallon all the way up to $4.29. Five stations were listed at $3.99 and three others were at $4.09. These prices vary based on when the prices are reported.
While there were no reports for some stations in Opp, of those available, prices ranged from $4.05 to $4.19 per gallon.
Three Florala stations represented in the GasBuddy’s report showed prices from $3.99 to $4.03.
The ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine has led to short oil supplies for many nations and leads experts to believe prices will likely continue to increase.
“[Russian oil] is a big part for Europe and other countries, and so that drives the price up globally, and we have to pay the global price for it just like everybody else. We’re likely to see some higher prices even still,” said AAA Spokesman Clay Ingram.”
AAA reports that Alabama’s current average gas cost has already surpassed the previous record of $4.05, which was recorded on Sept. 16, 2008.
Many people are making plans to compensate for the rising gas costs.
“The kids are going to start riding the bus in the mornings. I usually drive them. We don’t live that far from the school, but it adds up. Especially with gas being $4-plus a gallon,” said Whitney Carter Cook.
Some plan to simply curtail their driving habits and save in other areas.
“Consolidating trips for errands, groceries, church, appointments; leaving earlier to drive slower and save gas, eating sandwiches instead of fast food when possible,” said Emili Fowler.
While things could improve before summer, some are already questioning vacation plans.
“No spring beach vacation and no trips to the beach this summer,” said Linda Rodgers. “We are doing local trips only. Point A, buying a pool for children to enjoy, and eating at local restaurants.”
“[We’re] gonna keep it local … Point A camping, fishing, swimming in our pool, going to church, and just living the best we can with what we have,” said Crissy Godwin.
Others are prepared to keep going as usual.
“Plans aren’t going to change just because of fuel prices. Our Boggs trips, beach trips, and out-of-town trips are going to stay on schedule. There is enough oil in America to keep us going. Some refineries have actually shut down and became oil storage facilities just to store all the oil,” said Anthony Cotton.
“Our plans will not change. We will go where we wish to go,” added Brenda Goolsby-Castilla.
(Editor’s Note: Attempts to reach local gas station representatives for their insight were unsuccessful as of Friday afternoon.)