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Gas prices fall by record amounts

August 1, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
Experts say gas prices have gone down by record amounts over the last week in Southern California.According to the Automobile Club of Southern California, in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area the average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline is $4.26, down about 15 cents in the last week. In Orange County, drivers are paying an average of $4.22, down 14 cents. In the Inland Empire, the average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline dropped about 14 cents to $4.24. In Ventura County, the average price at the pump is $4.26, down 11 cents in the last week.

Experts say lower demand and price-conscious drivers have brought prices down at the pump over the last week. The price of oil has also helped play a role in the drop. The price of oil has dropped more than $20 since early July when it hit a record high of $147 a barrel.

Still experts say drivers need to stay cautious. They say a lot of activity overseas recently could bring prices back up. On Monday militants attacked two oil pipelines in Nigeria, and earlier this week the president of Iran said the country has doubled the size of its nuclear program.

Some drivers say that although prices have come down, they're still pretty high.

"Just waiting for it to go down to like three dollars and something," said Evangeline Berry.

"What's funny to me is we're getting so excited when they go down just a little bit, when just a few weeks ago we got all excited when they went way up," said Robin Ross. "And now this seems like a low price and it actually really isn't."

Other drivers say they've noticed a difference when filling up.

"I have noticed they've gone down," said motorist Michael Flexen. "It is a relief, it does help. You, know, but what are you going to do, you know, you have to just go with it."

"It's saving me about $15-20 a week right now 'cuz I drive to Riverside, so it's a big savings, you know" said Manuel Becerra.

Despite the record drop, fuel prices are still much higher than last year. Drivers in Southern California are paying about $1.25 more than this time last year.

Experts say the price of oil is not the best gage when determining how much gas is going to cost at the pump because oil prices are so unstable. They say the best thing for drivers to do is enjoy the lower prices while they can.

 

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