Pump Patrol: Week 4 - WSET.com - ABC13

Pump Patrol: Week 4

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Reporter:  Danner Evans l  Videographer:  Jemon Haskins

Lynchburg, VA - Good news at the pumps! The average price of a gallon of regular unleaded in Virginia is $3.56 according to Gasbuddy.com.

In Roanoke we found prices as low as $3.19 and in Lynchburg they are around $3.29.

As you plan for your summer vacation, you're probably wondering how long can it last. We've got the answer - plus we're helping a couple people fill up in this week's Pump Patrol.

It may not quite be like the good old days, but at around $3.29 for gallon of regular unleaded in Lynchburg this week -- a lot of drivers at the Timberlake Kroger like what they see.

Lynchburg College economics professor Joe Turek said we've got it good.

"Prices for gas in Virginia are among the lowest in the nation," Turek said.

Turek has taught us these low prices have everything to do with supply and demand.

"The demand side is where all the action is this week," Turek said. "People appear to be buying more, industrial activity appears to be increasing, consumer sentiment is up. All of the news on the demand side would seem to suggest that there is some improvement in the economy and one of the points that we've made previously is as the economy increases so does the demand for energy, generally, and also gas. So this would suggest a slight increase in gas prices in the near future."

That's bad news for folks on a fixed income who have to fill up like Norman Ottinger

"My social security doesn't go far. It hurts," Ottinger said.

Even $3.29 a gallon hurts Samantha Wade who has to commute to Lynchburg from Bedford for work seven days a week.

"I usually have to put gas in my car every two days," Wade said. "I live on the other side of Bedford going towards the lake so coming to Lynchburg each day going down 460 or 221, it varies how much gas I use."

That's why the ABC 13 Pump Patrol is partnering with Kroger to help them out with a $50 gift card for gas.

"Usually I only put $25 in at a time and that gives me half a tank so that will fill it up," Wade said.

"It means maybe I won't have to worry about buying groceries this week," Ottinger said.

Turek expects prices will take a bit of a jump because there are going to be people taking vacations and that should increase the demand for gas.

He said we'll see that closer to the holiday, but don't expect to see anything substantial. So that is definitely some good news.

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