BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) -- This is the time of year we see a drop in gas prices, usually because of the cold winter months and people not getting out. But this year the rising concern over the coronavirus is keeping a lot of motorist in China off the road, which is helping us here at the gas pumps.
Marvin Dotson works for a pressure washing business. He was filling up his machines at one station in north Birmingham and he has noticed a drop in prices.
“It helps me very much cause I’m able to buy more gas. Get the job done and it saves on my pocket,” Dotson said.
AAA of Alabama says the average cost of gasoline now is about $2.14 a gallon, 21 cents cheaper than just a month ago. It turns out the coronavirus is playing a major role in the prices coming down.
“Chinese demand has dropped significantly in recent weeks for gasoline and they are one of the major demand countries across the globe,” Clay Ingram of AAA said.
In China companies are shutting down and people are not traveling because of the contagious disease. Ingram believes the good news for motorist will continue.
“But as we get into March and spring break is right around the corner, weather warms up a little and those blue skies comes back. People will start getting out a little bit more and that will cause our demand to slowly start increasing throughout the spring,” Ingram said.
If the coronavirus continues to grow it will still impact global demand and gas prices.
“Unfortunate, it is. I hate it but it is helping,” Dotson said.
Dotson and others hope the coronavirus will start to recede despite the good news for gas prices here. If you want to look for a gas deal check out AAA and Gasbuddy for the latest places for gas prices.