High gas may lead to drastic measures


Any gas over $4 a gallon is enough to make you cringe.

But at one /*gas*/ station in /*Raleigh*/, a gallon of regular unleaded costs $3.88. That's 10 cents below the state average.

The savings still have drivers in a sour mood.

One consumer says his lawnmower takes $22 and that might allow him to mow his yard twice.

"People can't even afford to go to work anymore," one consumer told /*Eyewitness News*/. "Who can afford to pay 50-60 dollars a week for gas? It's ridiculous. We've got to do something."

The national average hit a record high -- $4.08 a gallon Wednesday. Eyewitness News found prices near that in Raleigh.

The prices have caused Lillie Davis to change the way she travels to New York.

"I take the Amtrak," Davis said. "I do not drive anymore. You can hardly get a ticket anymore on Amtrak."

/*President Bush*/ wants to lift a ban on offshore drilling, saying it will help gas prices.

Some say that's drastic, but they are ready for anything that will help them fill up their wallets and their gas tanks.

U.S. Senate candidate /*Kay Hagan*/ talked with drivers at the Raleigh gas station Wednesday.

Both say their plans will get gas prices down.

Hagan spent a few minutes shaking hands and talking dollars with weary drivers.

She also took the opportunity to challenge popular incumbent and rival, /*Senator Elizabeth Dole*/.

"Gas was $1.52 a gallon six years ago when Liddy Dole took office," Hagan said. "Here it's $4.08 a gallon. What has she done in the last six years?"

Senator Dole was not available for an on-camera interview, but in a statement, her campaign said, "We need to stop the 13 billion dollars in incentives to big oil and gas companies. We've got to stop that. But we've got to use those funds instead and invest them into renewable energies."

President Bush wants to end a ban on offshore drilling, and it's unclear whether or not that will involve the N.C. coast.

Dole's campaign released a statement saying she has a record against lifting the ban but would have to look closely at any future proposals and how those proposals would affect N.C.

However, Hagan says "we cannot drill ourselves to energy independence."

The idea to drill off the coast of North Carolina is nothing more than a desperate attempt by Republicans to avoid true energy independence in favor of padding the profits of special interests once more," Hagan said. "We need to end our dependence on foreign oil by reinvesting tax incentives given to Big Oil and Gas into clean, green collar jobs that can't be shipped overseas."

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