79 days of relief is a welcome sight

Published 8:25 pm Saturday, December 6, 2008

Gas prices have been falling like a rock for the last several weeks. In fact, yesterday was the 79th consecutive day that fuel prices had fallen in the Birmingham area as prices have fallen below the $1.70 mark for the first time since April 2004. Some areas are even seeing prices go even lower than that.

AAA spokesperson Clay Ingram gives a lot of the credit to consumers for bringing the prices down, and we have done a lot of things to cut down on our fuel consumption. We are driving more fuel-efficient vehicles. We are finding ways to combine our trips more often, thus cutting down on the miles we drive.

There are many in Chilton County who carpool to work every day whether they meet at the Jemison-Thorsby exit or some other place. Some have even taken drastic measures to make sure their trucks or cars get more than 40 miles to the gallon.

While we have been a big part in bringing the prices down to where they should be, but ultimately, the economy is one of the big reasons why our prices are down. For a while, crude oil was driving the struggling economy. Investors were buying oil instead of dead stocks to try to make money.

That caused any little detail to send gas prices soaring. It didn’t matter whether it was a hurricane cutting production or if someone looked the wrong way in the Middle East. It artificially inflated the price very quickly, but the economy went sour. People stopped buying so much fuel refusing to pay the high prices, and that has created a large supply.

And now, prices are falling back to the levels where they are supposed to be.

The economy was trying to ride something that was going up, but the gas market burst over the last few weeks. It is a relief for everyone to be paying the lower prices. We doubt we will ever see $4 again for a long time if ever.