HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Gas prices in Huntsville rose 56 cents in less than a week and some local business owners are feeling the strain of the higher prices.
Michael Collins, the owner of Rocket City Delivery, said his business relies on drivers and when gas prices are this high it is a strain to keep gas tanks full.
“I’m personally taking a lot of the orders myself too, just to keep the burden off the drivers,” Collins said. “Some of the longer rides, I know they don’t want to do it because gas is so expensive.”
Collins said he created his current compensation system to keep his prices competitive with bigger food delivery services.
“We established our commission and delivery fee and all that during 2020 when gas was $1.85,” Collins said. “We’ve never changed it and I can see it changing pretty soon.”
According to GasBuddy, the average price of gas in Huntsville on Monday was $3.89.
As the Russian assault of Ukraine continues, the global oil supply faces disruptions. The United States is both the world’s largest producer and consumer of oil, but domestic oil production cannot supply all the nation’s needs. Last year, 8% of U.S. oil imports came from Russia.
Energy prices are contributing to high inflation rates. Prices jumped 7.5% in January and they are estimated to have jumped nearly 8% in February.
When they look at current prices, many drivers are searching for ways to save.
AAA spokesperson Clay Ingram said it is uncommon for gas prices to jump more than 10 cents in a day as they have for the past couple of weeks. When significant price jumps occur you also see very inconsistent pricing between gas stations.
“We’re still seeing a wide variety of pricing out there, and if you’re not careful, you can end up paying 40 cents a gallon or so more than you need to be paying,” Ingram said.
Ingram said, when gas prices go up, it’s normal to see wait times increase at comparatively priced gas stations.
“If we’re price shopping, we’re creating that competition in the marketplace for our business that will push prices even lower,” Ingram said.
Drivers can also conserve gas by monitoring their driving. By slowing the rate of acceleration and deceleration and maintaining a constant speed whenever possible, drivers may burn up to 30% less gas.