Nov. 14–HIGH POINT — Thanksgiving holiday travelers probably will pay more for gasoline to reach family gatherings next week, though gas prices have eased this fall for the first time in a year.
Motorists can expect to pay the highest average Thanksgiving prices at the pump in four years, according to AAA Carolinas. However, gas prices have eased from their summer highs during October and the first part of this month, and some local stations are selling gas at prices matching or below last Thanksgiving.
“We expect Carolinians to hit the road in record numbers this Thanksgiving holiday to spend time with their family and friends,” said Dave Parsons, president and CEO of AAA Carolinas. “With Thanksgiving being the busiest travel weekend of the year, we want to remind families to take extra measures to ensure safety on the highways.”
In the Greensboro-High Point area, the average price for self-service unleaded is $2.54 a gallon, though some High Point service stations were selling gas closer to $2.30 per gallon on Wednesday. Last Thanksgiving holiday, the Greensboro-High Point area average was $2.38 per gallon, according to AAA Carolinas.
Gas prices have eased in the past month and a half, the first sustained decline in prices since the fall of last year.
The average price of self-service unleaded is down 6 cents from a week ago and 21 cents per gallon from a month ago, AAA Carolinas reports.
“Prices could plunge even lower, especially if we see a surge in gasoline production after refiners fully restart units from the fall maintenance season,” said national AAA spokeswoman Jeanette Casselano. “Also driving down pump prices is the fact that crude oil is selling under $65 a barrel, a rare sight this year.”
Anyone who is thinking about drinking alcohol excessively and driving during the holiday week should reconsider, according to law enforcement authorities.
The N.C. State Highway Patrol and other law enforcement agencies will have extra patrols and cruisers out on state roadways.
The State Highway Patrol will take part in the Thanksgiving I-40 Challenge, a joint operation among seven other states along the Interstate 40 corridor. Starting next Wednesday, troopers will be stationed every 20 miles along the major interstate.
“With so many ride sharing services available such as Uber and Lyft, there is no excuse for getting behind the wheel after drinking alcohol,” said Tiffany Wright, AAA Carolinas Traffic Safety Foundation president.
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