OSWEGO, NY ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Å“ The high cost of gasoline is causing many people to rethink their driving habits.
Many are combining as many errands as possible in one trip in an effort to conserve gas. Some are planning to vacation nearby instead of taking lengthy road trips.
Others are cutting back on recreational driving.
Mark Laforest of Watertown visited the Port City for a recent event at the Oswego Speedway.
The cost of gas was $4.03 a gallon when he drove to Oswego for the races, he said.
“It was $3.99 down on the road here (in Oswego) yesterday when I came in,” he said.
Some places, closer to Route 81 had prices at $4.09 added Don Carbone, also of Watertown.
“It hasn’t caused me to cut back on my driving,” Laforest said. “I’m trying not to let it. But I don’t see myself coming down here to these races as much as I used to.”
The race fans say they might visit other tracks that might be closer to home.
“It’s probably going to cost me $60, maybe $70 roundtrip (for his truck and trailer) down and back to Watertown,” Laforest said. “Last year it was about $40.”
“These guys come down from Buffalo. It cost them a hundred bucks just to get here,” Laforest said indicating a large camper near his campsite. “I come down to Oswego five or six times a year with the camper; usually just for the bigger shows, Classic Weekend and like that. It won’t be that often probably this year, unless things change.”
Laforest and Carbone pointed out that there weren’t as many campers parked across from the speedway for the holiday event as there were last year.
“I’ve got to believe gas is half the reason why,” Carbone added.
Carbone said he drives to Syracuse every day to go to work.
“Before the gas crunch it was only costing me like $375 a month,” he said. “I’m up over $480 right now. That’s in a car that’s not bad, getting around 24 miles to the gallon. And, it’s only going to go up.”
“It’s too bad, but it sure does hurt,” Laforest said. “You hook up your trailer and it costs twice as much.”
“It’s horrible. It’s taking a bite out of your everyday expenses. I filled up our two cars and it cost me $139 for both,” Jeff O’Connor said. “That’s about one day’s pay. So I’m living on four day’s pay now.”
“We’re all feeling the pain of it. It’s brutal. It’s getting to where the average guy can’t afford it,” he continued.