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Drivers’ wallets taking hard hits

Melissa Topey • May 25, 2014 at 5:00 PM

Memorial Day drivers do not seem to be bothered by gas prices, as an ever-increasing number are hitting the road this weekend, when 31.8 million travelers are expected to drive 50 miles or more.


“That is the most in nine years, the most since the recession and the second highest this century,” said Michael Green, AAA spokesman.

Gas prices vary based on location but should not be too much higher than this time last year, Green said. Memorial Day weekend last year saw average gas prices of $3.70 per gallon nationally, he said, while Ohio averaged $3.77.

On Friday, Sandusky saw gas prices of $3.85, which was in line with the state average. However, while AAA does not specifically monitor the city, Green said it would not be unusual if Sandusky were a little higher than other places because of tourists flocking to the area. This would generate a higher demand on gasoline, resulting in higher pricing. AAA does not, however, anticipate gas prices climbing to $4 per gallon. “We do not expect gas prices to near $4,” Green said. “They will probably not get much higher”

In fact, once the holiday weekend passes, prices could drop by 10 to 15 cents, he said.

Fuel prices did not seem to be affecting local stations Friday.

Ann Wright, assistant manager of the BP station at Decatur and Washington streets, was all smiles as she greeted and cashed out customers in the convenience store.

She agreed with Green’s prediction, that the price for a gallon of gas should soon drop and doesn’t anticipate an increase from Friday afternoon’s $3.85 — which was about an 8-cent jump over the previous day’s average of $3.77 per gallon in Ohio.

“It won’t go up any more than it did,” Wright said. “The industry knows even tourists won’t pay more.”

The prices shouldn’t impact the plans of Sandusky resident Jodi Miller, who pulled up at the pump at the BP station Friday. She was already planning to stay in the area with her family for a cookout and to possibly see a parade with her daughter.

The increase was not a surprise to her.

“We are getting used to high gas prices” Miller said.

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