There is no possible way that if you’re reading this, the high fuel prices aren’t affecting you. Per the United States Energy Information Administration, the national average price for one gallon of diesel fuel is $5.006. This is $0.130 more than last week and when compared to one year ago, it’s up $1.937 per gallon of fuel.
I myself have taken a hit on the price of fuel in our Project Towboat. The 2011 Ram 2500 has a 32-gallon tank and it used to hurt when it would fill up for $100. Now that same tank is costing $160. Now that we’ve established that it hurts at the pump, let’s talk about something else this is affecting; Pubic service vehicles.
Although our tax dollars pay for this, that isn’t cutting it in some areas. News broke today that a volunteer fire department in North Carolina has resorted to paying for fuel for their fire engines out of their own pockets. Every fire and police department in the country is facing its most expensive summer to date considering their scope of work requires fuel.
The NC fire department, Kenly Fire Department, is no exception, with many of its volunteers draining their wallets to save those in need during an emergency call. “At the end of the day, we have to prepare for the worst,” said Kenly Fire Department Fire Chief Paul Whitehurst.
A member of the Kenly Fire Department responding to a fire call gets a stipend of $12. The funding comes from a grant due to run out at the end of the year, according to Whitehurst. However, volunteers do not get paid for medical calls, which account for about 50% of the calls the Kenly Fire Department receives. Although it is a volunteer department, with these current prices, it’s actually costing them money to help serve their community.
Per Kenly FD, the price of a gallon of diesel fuel is almost $6. In the past four months, Whitehurst said the department has spent an average of $1,308.69 per month on diesel fuel which is more than double the average ( $612.47 per month) they were paying last year. Yeah, the prices are hurting us all but when we start potentially preventing the safety of our communities because of the fuel cost, something has to change.
What are your thoughts on these fuel prices? What are the fuel prices in your area? Let us know in the comments below.