Alabama’s gas prices second lowest in nation

Published 11:00 pm Wednesday, May 30, 2012


A customer pumps gas at the Kangaroo gas station on U.S. Highway 231 in Troy, Ala., Wednesday, May 30, 2012. (Messenger Staff Photo/Thomas Graning)

On a bad day at the gas pump, D’Atra Montgomery said she pays nearly double the price of what she does on a “good day.”

“The most I have spent this year is about $58,” Montgomery said with a sigh. “During the height of when gas prices went up, it was horrible.”

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Montgomery drives a 1995 Honda Civic that she praises for having good gas mileage. During “more normal” pricing for fuel, the 21-year-old Troy University senior only shells out about $35 for a full tank of gas.

But there has been a little relief for Montgomery and the rest of Pike County motorists over the last few days.

According to AAA Alabama, the average price of gas per gallon for the city of Troy is $3.22, down from April’s average price of $3.62 per gallon.

On Thursday, the least expensive gas was found at the Murphy USA station in front of Walmart, and the Kangaroo store at the corner of U.S. Hwy. 231 and Henderson Highway. Customers at those locations paid $3.12 at the pump. The most expensive gas in Troy was $3.29.

Prices haven’t just decreased from last month, though. There has also been improvement over last summer’s prices, as well. In May of 2011 gas prices were averaging about $3.59 per gallon, according to AAA.

Alabama’s prices are currently the second lowest in the nation, falling behind only South Carolina where the average per gallon for the month of May is $3.27

“It’s been nice the last few days. I feel like I can actually go out with my friends and eat because I am spending less to travel to school and go visit my family.”

Montgomery, who is from Tuscaloosa, said this year’s been a difficult one due to gas prices.

“I am used to going home once a month, but I had to cut back to once every two months or on special occasions,” Montgomery said. “That’s kind of hard for a college student, especially when you depend on your family so much.”

But some folks in the area aren’t as excited as Montgomery, just yet.

“Anytime prices go down you feel a little relief,” said Courtney Oliver at Jean’s Flowers in Troy. “But how long is it going to last? By next week, it could be back up. And then, if there is a hurricane.”

Oliver said the dip in prices hasn’t lowered the cost of flower shipments to the store, yet. And the lower cost for gas hasn’t impacted Jean’s delivery service at this point. However, even at the height of soaring prices, the store managed to hang on to its standard $5 delivery fee.

“We will do that for as long as we can,” Oliver said.

Oliver said she’s seen prices fluctuate so much during the summer months that she doesn’t think they will stay this low for long.

“We aren’t going to count our chickens, right now,” Oliver said.

John Mann contributed to this story.