Residents still concerned for gas prices despite price drop

Oil nationally drops below $100 a barrel for first time in two weeks

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) — On Monday, U.S. oil prices fell below $100 a barrel for the first time since March 1 — more than an 8% plunge in cost.

Some of Broad Street’s gas stations dropped 20 cents in price per gallon at the pump, but average prices in the city remained unchanged over the past week.

For Isaac Swert, an Ohio State student traveling to Florida with his friends for Spring Break, Chattanooga’s gas prices were some of the most shocking he’d seen.

“For here for credit [at] $4.14, it’s probably been the highest,” Swert said. “Up in Ohio, they usually do same for cash and credit at 4$.09, but with here being $4.14 for credit, it’s the highest I think we’ve seen so far.”

Chattanooga resident Derrick Hodge is pessimistic about prices getting better at the pump, saying he doesn’t expect anything to get better for the next “two to three years.”

He blamed both the war in Ukraine and the Biden administration as the reasons behind increased prices.

“This is ridiculous on gas prices right now,” Hodge said. “I think, for now, it’s going to keep on climbing. Ever since Biden got back into office, that’s when gas prices went up. We need Trump back, I think.”

Rising prices are also affecting Chattanoogans off of the road.

It’s led local business owner Jerry Lee of Lee’s Landscaping to do something he’s never had to do before — add a fuel charge to his customers’ bills.

“It’s put all of us in a position to where we have to charge more and we have to go up,” Lee said. “None of us are happy about it. For me, it’s going to be an addition of probably $200 a week in fuel this year as compared to two years ago. That’s $800 a month.

Despite the rise in prices, however, Lee is choosing to remain optimistic and count his blessings. He encourages everyone in the city to do the same.

“We can complain about all of the things that we don’t have, but our city’s not being bombed right now,” Lee said. “If we lose perspective and just complain about what we don’t have or what things look like, then we truly have lost perspective altogether because, even still, we live in the greatest country in the world.”

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