Gas prices hitting pocketbooks hard



Tracey Tong/metro ottawa


Ottawa’s Chris Stoney fills his minivan yesterday. High gas prices here are causing concern among motorists.


Soaring gas prices have Chris Stoney seeking alternatives to taking the family minivan to work.

The Carleton University professor only uses a vehicle when he can’t reach his destination by bus, or if he has a lot of shopping to do. He’s also cycled, walked, skated and even kayaked to work.

“Our policy is to use it as little as possible,” said Stoney, who filled up at Drummond’s Gas on Bronson and Imperial streets yesterday.

Oil’s recent smash through the $100-per-barrel benchmark has gas prices at more than $1.06 per litre here, and motorists say they’re limiting trips and finding alternate means of transportation.

Drivers have been complaining about gas prices, said Amro Almoflehi, an attendant at the Petro Canada on Bronson and Somerset streets, where gas was 106.6 yesterday — one of the more expensive spots to fuel up, according to

“They complain a lot about the prices and say that isn’t worth it,” said Almoflehi.

He’s seen people pumping only $5, and even $4, per transaction.

“If it’s expensive, you’re only going to put in what you need for the day, and you watch your trips,” said Tony Roumie, leasee of Drummond’s Gas, which at 106.3 was among the cheaper places to buy gas in Ottawa yesterday.

Prices are too high, said Marc Melanson, a Toronto resident in Ottawa on business, who flashed a $95 receipt for his fill-up at the Petro-Canada.

Ottawa’s Alana Lauzon is considering trading in her Ford Windstar. In the meantime, she usually takes the bus to and from work to save money, using the car just for shopping trips.

Gas prices are high, but people continue to shell out for fuel. “It’s like food,” said Almoflehi. “People buy it if they need it.”

Motorists aren’t the only ones hurt by rising prices, though. “It decreases our sale of gas,” said Roumie. “When the prices go up, people buy (fewer) litres.”

Roumie said it’s the big oil companies that are taking advantage of people around the holiday season.

“Everyone is out partying and out of town,” said Roumie. “They know you’re not going to cancel your trip to Mont Tremblant because gas is $5 more.”

Count your blessings

  • Gas prices were much higher outside the city yesterday. had an Esso station in Shawville listed at $1.16 per litre yesterday.