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Mountain area gas prices are down this Thanksgiving

Danny Oliva, of Oakhurst, fills up his white SUV at the Chevron gas station in Oakhurst on Monday, Nov. 19. He said he has noticed a dip in gas prices over the last few days. Oliva feels this comes at a perfect time with Thanksgiving and Christmas on the way.
Danny Oliva, of Oakhurst, fills up his white SUV at the Chevron gas station in Oakhurst on Monday, Nov. 19. He said he has noticed a dip in gas prices over the last few days. Oliva feels this comes at a perfect time with Thanksgiving and Christmas on the way. wramirez@sierrastar.com

Here is something to be thankful for this Thanksgiving: lower gas prices.

Madera County’s average gas price is $3.46, Kings County is $3.48 and Tulare County is $3.58.

In Fresno, gas prices tumbled 6.7 cents this past week, averaging $3.50, according to GasBuddy’s survey of 364 stations in the city.

AAA analysts said a buildup of crude oil supplies worldwide is putting downward pressure on prices at the pump. But how long gas prices will remain lower remains unclear. AAA said there is speculation in the industry that crude oil production could be reduced, causing prices to rise.

Any drop in gas prices is likely welcomed by the legions of people about to embark on trips for Thanksgiving.

Danny Oliva, 19, of Oakhurst, said he has noticed the drop in prices and it could not have come at a better time for the mountain community.

“Thanksgiving is coming. Christmas is coming. You have to buy gifts and and everything, so we all need help saving, right?” Oliva said while filling up his white GMC SUV at the Chevron gas station in Oakhurst.

Oliva said he was especially surprised when he saw that the gas at Chukchansi Crossing station was under $3. Gas there is priced at $2.95, according to GasBuddy.

Oliva will not be traveling out of town for the holidays, but he said he knows many people do and how nice these dips in gas prices must be for those driving long distances.

“The nearly 49 million Americans hitting the road for Thanksgiving will find pump prices similar to last year,” said Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokeswoman “When it comes time to fill-up during the trip, motorists should keep in mind that gas stations along highly traveled routes may find prices more expensive than in town.”

Statewide, Califonia’s average gas price was $3.64 cents Monday, a decline of 17 cents from last month. And while gas prices are falling nationwide, California still has among the highest prices in the United States. The national average is $2.64 a gallon.

Caltrans also wants to remind motorists to follow a few simple rules:

  • Head out early. The busiest times on the road will be Wednesday afternoon and Sunday evening.

  • Plan ahead. Make sure your vehicle is in good condition. Check your brakes, wind shield wipers, tire pressure, tire tread and fuel supply.

  • Don’t be a distracted driver. Keep your eyes on the road.
  • Be patient. Expect traffic and be courteous to other drivers.
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