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Busy travel weekend expected for Labor Day thanks to lower prices than last year
GasBuddy says it was cheapest summer for gas in 12 years
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Frank Barroqueiro stops by the Kroger Fuel Center on Thompson Bridge Road Wednesday afternoon to fill the tank of his Jeep. Drivers should be pleased to notice that even as gas prices are on the rise, they are still the lowest summer average in 12 years, which could mean more traveling this Labor Day weekend.

It hasn’t felt like it recently, but this summer has featured the cheapest gas prices since 2004, according to GasBuddy.com.

That’s good news for drivers ahead of the Labor Day weekend, as Georgia gas prices — at $2.16 per gallon — were still more than 14 cents cheaper than a year ago as of Wednesday. And nationally, prices were 6.5 cents higher than the current Georgia average but a full 25 cents cheaper than the national average a year earlier.

See the cheapest gas prices in the area.

Garrett Townsend, Georgia public affairs director for AAA, looks for those prices to make a major impact.

“We expect Georgians to hit the roads in record numbers and make the most of the final (summer) holiday,” Townsend said.

Perhaps the best news of all for consumers, according to GasBuddy, is an estimated $18.9 billion in savings nationally on gas purchases compared to last summer.

“As the holiday approaches, it’s true that gasoline prices have risen across the country due in part to rumors of production cuts from OPEC which could begin to correct the balance of supply and demand, but take note, it could be just the third time in a decade prices are rising ahead of Labor Day,” said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy, in a press release. “While today’s trend may lead to some frustration, gas prices are likely to soon revert, leaving behind what has been the cheapest summer at the pump in over a decade.”

The end of the summer driving season marked by Labor Day weekend should lead to less demand for gas and falling price, according to GasBuddy’s press release.

Summer gasoline requirements from the national Environmental Protection Agency end Sept. 15, which should make way for the cheaper winter blend to make its way back to gas pumps, according to GasBuddy.

Townsend said in a press release that through Aug. 29, Georgia road fatalities were up to 921 from 900 at the same time a year ago. He said that underscores the importance of wearing a seat belt, avoiding distractions and not driving while tired.

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