Snowstorms cause drop in gasoline sales

As people heed the warnings of local officials and weather experts to avoid the snow and ice covered roads, there has been a direct impact on gasoline sales, according to the website GasBuddy.com. Especially in the eastern half of the country where many states are pounded with anywhere from 10 inches in Alabama to as much as 24 inches of snow in some mid-Atlantic and New England states, many schools and businesses took off Thursday and were closed again Friday, electing to stay safe at home.

“Looking at the overall volume of gasoline purchases at thousands of stations across the U.S., we see that fuel purchases for the last four weeks are down by 65% compared to 2013, and overall purchases year-to-date are down by 71%. There’s no question that these figures are weather-induced. It fully quantifies what we see and hear anecdotally,” said GasBuddy.com senior petroleum analyst Patrick DeHaan.

“With severe weather creating dangerous conditions across much of the country we want everyone to realize it’s foolish to challenge ‘Mother Nature.’ So when we have a chance to choose other options — like staying safe at home — we encourage everyone to exercise that discretion until roads are cleared for travel,” said Gregg Laskoski, also senior petroleum analyst.

“Nothing is so urgent that it warrants putting yourself or your family at risk,” Mr. DeHaan added. And based on a snapshot of GasBuddy’s gasoline purchase metrics, it appears most Americans agree.

GasBuddy operates over 250 similar websites that track gasoline prices at over 140,000 gasoline stations in the United States and Canada. In addition, GasBuddy offers a free smartphone app which has been downloaded over 25 million times to help motorists find the lowest gasoline prices in their area. To download the GasBuddy mobile application for free, go to GasBuddy.com.