Monday, June 2, 2008

Running Out of Gas

So high gas prices are causing increases in people running dry. I agree with this....

"We're seeing a lot of frustrated motorists who are trying to cut corners, and this is one way they're doing it," said AAA Mid-Atlantic spokeswoman Catherine Rossi. "But they're shooting themselves in the foot, or the wallet, in the long run."

That's because perpetually running on fumes can damage a car's fuel pump — requiring repairs that make a full tank of $4 gas seem like a bargain.

At work we got calls like this with some regularity before prices went up, so I guess it's hard for me to sympathize too much, especially with people who drove past numerous gas stations in the process.

Then there's this......

Research from The Nielsen Co. shows that drivers have been making more frequent trips to the pump but limiting how much they put in the tank.
Convenience stores, which sell about 80 percent of the nation's gas, are seeing fewer fill-ups, said industry spokesman Jeff Lenard.
"When the pump hits a certain dollar amount now, you're seeing more customers stop," said Lenard, with the National Association of Convenience Stores. "They're purchasing fewer gallons."

If you've only got so much money with you, fine. I've been there. But assuming you've got to have a certain amount of fuel to get by, more small trips isn't any better, unless you count some psychological impact of smaller numbers. To me personally, more small trips would just mean more reminders of what it costs and more chances to run out. Of course, I say this as the owner of two vehicles that get good mileage and aren't onerous to fill up.

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