Drivers Say Gas Prices Going Too High As Gustav Approaches

By Don Culpepper - bio | email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - With a state of emergency in effect, Mississippi's Attorney General will be able to punish price gouging for gasoline. Reports of big price jumps began pouring in Wednesday. And while not everyone agrees by how much, it seems everyone has noticed an overnight jump in gasoline prices in South Mississippi.

"I gassed up last night. It was $3.44 last night, $3.33 here yesterday morning, and now it's $3.50. So, yeah, it's going up," Marsha Allstat of Biloxi said.

Most drivers we spoke with said that kind of price increase is too quick and too steep since Gustav is still days away from making landfall.

"Now is the time when people need the gas at a cheaper price," Myrna Favre of Gulfport said. "It's more expensive when a hurricane comes, because you have to buy all the extra stuff."

But they have seen examples of what they consider model corporate behavior.

"There's a service station in D'Ibeville, local person Keith, and he keeps his down," Debra Bounds of Biloxi said.  "His was $3.39 and he's keeping it down at $3.39. I think that's what everybody ought to use and not these people that go up because of this."

Louis Simmons of Biloxi was so happy to see our crew reporting on the rising gas prices, he called out from his moving truck, "Thank God. Appreciate it!"

Simmons said he worries some businesses will take advantage of a frightening situation until the government tells them to stop.

"That's wrong," Simmons said. "What, are they going to keep going up on gas prices? There's no telling how much the material and stuff is going up. Since this storm is what? It ain't even turned into the Gulf yet? You know, it's wrong."