Diesel nearing $5 a gallon; gas at $4 just in time for holiday

| 5/23/2008

For the first time ever, at least one truck stop in the U.S. is selling diesel fuel for more than $5 a gallon as of Friday, May 23.

An employee on the fuel desk at Wilton Truck Plaza off Interstate 87 in Gansevoort, NY – which is north of Sarasota Springs – confirmed Friday’s price at $5.09 a gallon.

The rest of New York state isn’t far behind. ProMiles shows the state-wide average at $4.98 a gallon on Friday, May 23.

Meanwhile, across the nation, diesel prices shot up a whopping 7-cents a gallon overnight. The new, record-high national average is now $4.67 a gallon.

Gasoline prices closed the gap on $4 a gallon. The national average went up 4 cents to hit a new national record of $3.87 per gallon. Premium grade is already selling at $4 per gallon in some areas

The prices are taking their toll on consumers as well as truckers. AAA reports it expects to see the number of Memorial Day weekend travelers drop by 360,000 this year compared to 2007 – largely because of gas prices.

Earlier this week, while executives with five major oil companies were trying to recall how much they make while testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, May 21, the price of oil reached a new record high topping $135 a barrel.

The Associated Press reports the executives were pummeled with complaints by committee members that their companies are raking in record profits while the rest of the nation suffers.

Sen. Dick Durbin, D-IL, asked: “Where is the corporate conscience?”

Committee Chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-VT, told the oil executives that there is what he termed “a disconnect” between the prices that are established by normal supply and demand and the prices Americans are seeing at the pump today.