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Albany pump prices take sharp upward turn

ALBANY — What a difference a few hours make.

On Monday morning, Albany motorists opened the week enjoying the lowest average pump prices in the state, with at least seven gas stations selling regular-grade fuel at $3.039 per gallon. By dinner time, however, many of those stations had hiked their prices by 12-15 cents per gallon.

On the stretch of East Oglethorpe Boulevard from the Liberty Expressway to Mock Road, which has become “Gasoline Alley” for many local motorists with generally the lowest prices in town, stations were selling regular gas Monday night and Tuesday afternoon in the $3.169-$3.189 range.

Stations at Clark Avenue and Cordele Road, which had matched those low pump prices Monday morning, were also at $3.189 Tuesday afternoon, with one at $3.209.

Those prices were similar to ones found west of the river Tuesday, where regular-grade gas was selling for $3.1890-$3.199 a gallon at most stations observed.

A quick windshield tour on Tuesday afternoon found the best prices at the Pitt Stop on Sylvester Road, which advertised regular gas at $3.079 Tuesday afternoon, and the Citgo station at Sylvester Road and Branch Road, which was at $3.089.

The change was enough to drop metro Albany from its lead Tuesday on the AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report. On Monday, Albany led the state’s eight metro areas with an average price of $3.123 for a gallon of regular-grade retail gas. Tuesday morning, the average price for Albany had jumped 2.5 cents per gallon to $3.148.

That dropped metro Albany behind metro Macon, which had the best average price Tuesday at $3.146.

Albany wasn’t the only metro area in Georgia to see a pump price jump. Five of the metro areas, including Macon, saw day-to-day increases ranging from two-tenths of a cent to 1.2 cents per gallon, the highest of which was less than half the difference in price that Albany motorists saw.

The metro areas that saw slight decreased Tuesday from Monday were Atlanta (highest average in the state at $3.252), Athens ($3.247) and Columbus ($3.163). Each was two-tenths of a cent below its Monday’s average price.

Statewide, the average for regular gas was flat Monday to Tuesday at $3.227. The national average Tuesday morning was $3.349, up three-tenths of a cent from Monday.