Staff Photo: Erin Evans
Betty Jackson of Conyers fills up her car Monday at the QuikTrip on West Avenue. Jackson said she hopes gas prices do not go up much more. She said she is only driving for the essentials — work and groceries. Jackson and other Rockdale County residents are feeling the pinch of higher gas prices that have risen significantly in recent weeks.
Panama City-- Everyone's got their eyes on gas prices.
"Right now, the Florida average is $3.41 and a week ago, it was $3.15 so quite a big jump," said AAA Spokeswoman, Jessica Brady.
And it's expected to keep rising. Experts blame unrest in the Middle East, particularly Libya, which recently cut oil production. That's created a "fear premium" in the oil markets, which is pushing pump prices higher.
There are some things you can do to save you some money.
"One of the best things to do is to drive sensible and drive the speed limit. That could save you up to 33 percent," said Brady.
Proper vehicle maintenance also helps.
"Watching your tire pressure, keeping it right where it should be. Making sure your filters are clean-- air filter and fuel filter. Other than that, just the normal maintenance, making sure the spark plugs, you know that the cars not in need of a tune-up," said Owner of Ronnie’s Auto Shop, Ronnie Owens.
Oil and gas additives claim to improve mileage, but Owens says that's not always the case.
"A lot of products out there that are advertised that you can add to the vehicle and it's going to get better mileage, most of that I find to be pretty bogus and I wouldn't waste my money," said Owens.
There are also some resources out there to help you find the cheapest gas in your area.
We used a website, www.floridastategasprices.com to help us find the cheapest gas in the Panama City area. Tuesday evening the cheapest gas was $3.39 a gallon at the Texaco station on U.S. 98 and 23rd street.
There's also a smart phone app that will help you find the cheapest gas in any given area.