Bristol County

A broken record at the pump: gas prices hit another new high

WRENTHAM, Mass. — Claude McClain drives a Caddy. Only he’s not driving it too much these days.

“Unless I really gotta go somewhere,” he said. “Prices are too high.”

This week, McClain paid a hundred dollars to fill his tank.

Jason Fleury of Plainville can relate — and then some. He drives a pick-up.

“The card stopped at 124 dollars and it got me about 3/4 of a tank,” Fleury said. “It just keeps going up and it doesn’t look like it’s going to be stopping anytime soon.”

In fact, gas prices DID keep going up this week.

AAA reported a new average high in the U.S. Wednesday of $4.67 a gallon. That’s eight cents higher than a week ago — and $1.62 more than last year.

“It doesn’t matter what size car you have or where you’re traveling, everything’s expensive,” said Evelyn Suarez of Wrentham.

Suarez said gas prices are hitting those who can afford it least.

“Mostly who’s paying the high prices are the poor people,” she said. “The economy’s really worse now. So I don’t know what’s going to happen next.”

If you’re not a fan of high gas prices — you won’t like what’s likely to happen next: more of the same. With summer travel season here, daily demand for gas will likely outstrip daily supply — and that will necessitate drawing from reserves. One analyst predicts that could push gas over the $6 a gallon mark by August.

And that’s the average national price. In Massachusetts, drivers are generally paying more.

For example, on Route 1 in Wrentham, the Shell station near I-495 priced a gallon of regular at $5.09 on Wednesday — until about 3:00 p.m.

That’s when the price jumped to $5.19 a gallon.

“You can’t do it,” said McClain. ”You can’t. You can’t survive. You got clothes, food, kids. Ain’t gonna make it.”