Drivers Look To Other Options As Gas Prices Rise

Wednesday, July 11th 2007, 7:28 pm
By: News On 6

Some expect the Coffeyville refinery won't reopen until next year. That's putting pressure on the supply and driving up gas prices. Dozens of people are crowded around to get on a city bus, and most of them aren’t even at the bus stop. The News On 6’s Joshua Brakhage reports those people all came just to learn about paying fares and reading routes.

Tulsa transit general manager Bill Cartwright says he's seen response like this before.

"When gas went up over $3.00 a couple years ago, we had a 28% surge in ridership, a huge surge,” said Cartwright.

Cartwright says there's really just one thing holding many people back.

"The number one thing is, 'gosh, I have to have my car. My car is my safety blanket. I have to have my car with me’,” Cartwright said.

Many may get over that quickly as the price at the pump spikes.

The price at one Shell is $3.09. And the folks inside say it will only stay there for a few more hours. Across the street, the price is $3.29. If every station in town stays there, that would be a new record high.

Shelli Smith is one of the myriad drivers who say they're fed up of filling up.

"Even the richest people in the world can't hardly handle these prices,” Smith said.

"People are looking for options,” Cartwright said. “Gas prices are high. It's very expensive to drive a car around and people just want to know there's an alternative."

Cartwright says he expects as prices spike, ridership will too, as people decide instead to pay to avoid the pump.

"$3.50 will be big news. $4.00 will be big news, and there will be another surge there,” said Cartwright.

The old record we're poised to break is $3.26, set back in May. We're anywhere from a dime to a quarter higher than the national average, just $3.

Watch the video: Rising Gas Prices Have Drivers Seeking Alternative Modes Of Transportation