AAA rescues more stranded drivers due to high gas prices

AAA rescues more stranded drivers due to high gas prices

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PHOENIX -

We're all feeling the pain at the pump as gas prices increased around 50 cents a gallon in the past few weeks.

The state average is still $3.66, which is actually under the national average of $3.73, but here in the valley, we're above the state average.  $3.76 in Scottsdale, $3.70 in the east valley and a couple cents less than that in Peoria.

However, the high prices are leading to a growing problem.

When the dreaded yellow light comes on, you know what you have to do, but some people ignore it for as long as they can because of the sky-high price of gas.

Margie Gonzalez had no idea her daughter's car was on empty.  She had to call AAA for help.

What's her take on gas prices these days?

"It's horrendous.  I just can't believe it.  From one day to the next, it's 20 cents more."

AAA fleet manager Matt Mendonsa is one rescuing the mother of three.  He has been busy due to the rising gas prices.

"When the gas prices go up, the calls increase.  People are trying to stretch their gas tank as far as they can," he said.

AAA has already received over 1,400 calls this year from stranded drivers who need gas.

"We try to give people enough gas to get to the next station," said Mendonsa.

The price of gas is up 13 cents from last week and is expected to continue to climb.

The lowest average gas price found in the state is in Tucson, but up in Scottsdale, it's the highest, coming in at $3.74 -- but at a station in Scottsdale, it's higher than the average at $3.91.

"I don't see how some people can make it," said Gonzales, who drives from Phoenix to the Ahwatukee area for work.  She adds that filling up the tank is getting tougher as the prices get higher.

"There's no bus line from here to Ahwatukee and yeah, it hurts."

AAA says drivers often wait to find the best deal at the pump, but that could leave them stranded.


www.myfoxphoenix.com/gas

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