Gas prices have once again increased across the US, hitting a five-month high of over $3.60 per gallon. The surge in prices follows Saudi Arabia’s recent announcement that it will be reducing its oil production. Analysts have warned that a combination of high demand and rising oil prices could potentially bring gas prices back up to last summer’s record highs of $5 per gallon.
In light of these predictions, many motorists are stockpiling gas in order to lock in the lower prices now. A snap poll of 3,000 drivers commissioned by Gunther Volvo Delray Beach found that over 1-in-3 drivers in America (34%) admit to buying more gas than they currently need.
Despite the fear of gas prices continuing to rise, hoarding gas has raised some moral concerns. The survey found that 65% of respondents who hoard gas feel remorseful about their actions. Additionally, one in three respondents who have not hoarded gas said they would name and shame someone on social media if they saw them doing it.
Of those who admitted to hoarding gas, 71% claimed their primary reason for doing so was the fear of an extreme event that would cause a rush for gas. This reasoning is understandable, as recent times have seen global events such as the COVID-19 pandemic and war in Europe leading to extreme shortages of various products. Panic buying of non-essential commodities such as toilet paper has also been witnessed, so it is not far-fetched to assume a similar phenomenon could happen with gas.
Interestingly, the study (carried out by QuestionPro) found that 41% of gas hoarders would have no hesitation in reselling it to friends, family or neighbors at a higher price if supplies diminished. This raises questions about community spirit and whether people prioritize profits over helping others in times of crisis. Additionally, 56% of respondents said they would politely decline if offered gas from a neighbor at an inflated price during a supply shortage.
“While hoarding gas may seem like a logical step to take in anticipation of rising prices, it is important to consider the moral implications of such actions. The fear of running out of gas during a crisis is understandable, but we must not forget to prioritize community spirit and helping one another in times of need” says according to Joseph Gunther IV of Gunther Volvo Delray Beach.
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