Gas prices climb to $3.50 per gallonPublished 10:52pm Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Kathy Anderson wasn’t thrilled about paying $3.47 per gallon to fuel up her Ford SUV Tuesday evening.
“It sucks!” she exclaimed. “It’s ridiculous, and it’s supposed to go higher.”
The Niles resident paid for regular unleaded gas at the Admiral at 17th and Oak streets in Niles, which was one of the lowest-priced gas stations in town that day.
Although Anderson doesn’t commute to work, she transports family members, including her elderly mother, around the area. Despite Michigan gas prices being nearly 10 cents higher than a week ago and nearly 77 cents higher than one year ago, Anderson doesn’t believe it will affect how much she drives.
“It should, but I can’t help it,” she said. “You gotta go.”
Average retail gasoline prices in Michigan have risen 9.4 cents per gallon in the past week, according to MichiganGasPrices.com.
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, as of Monday, national gas prices average $3.52 per gallon, up more than 13 cents from one week ago and nearly 77 cents a year ago.
The U.S. Department of Energy reported Tuesday that oil prices should average $105 per barrel in 2011, raising its outlook due to the effect the Middle East unrest has had on its crude exports.
The DOE has also estimated there is a 25 percent chance gas prices could average $4 per gallon this summer — which can devastate not just motorists, but those who heavily depend on fuel to do their jobs.
The Niles Police Department runs 12 squad cars, but Capt. Jim Millin said the current prices won’t affect the 14-officer department unless they rise above $4 per gallon.
“Fuel is something that we budget for each year,” Millin said. “Right now, I don’t think it’s a problem for us.
“If it rose drastically, if it was threatening our budget … we would look at things like doubling officers up or so on, but we’re not going to change the amount of protection we’ll have on the streets because of fuel,” he said.
Lowest area gas prices at 5 p.m. Tuesday:
• $3.47 — Speedway, 1402 South 11th and Fort streets; Murphy USA, Walmart on South 11th Street; BP, 2326 South 11th St. and Fulkerson Road; and Admiral, 1701 Oak and 17th streets
• $3.43 — Pilot, 1860 East Napier Ave. near Interstate 90, exit 30
• $3.49 — Marathon, Phillips 66, Citgo and BP
• $3.43 — Family Fare
• $3.55 — Marathon
• $3.52 — Kroger, 1020 West McKinley Ave. and North Hickory Road; BP, 3605 South Bremen Highway and Ireland Road; and Meijer, 3610 South Bremen Highway and U.S. 20 bypass
• $3.45 — Pilot, 6424 Cleveland Rd. and U.S. Highway 31 bypass
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