Virginians broke record on fuel expenses in 2011

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - You paid the price last year for the pain at the pump. According to AAA, Virginians spent more than ever before on gasoline in 2011. On average, a family paid more than $4,554 for fuel last year. That's about $380 a month.

"It's unbelievable! You never realize how much you actually spend on gas cause it's such a necessity," said Matt Jordan.

"Oh, I spent way more than that!" Mike Gerber added while pumping gas.

RACHEL asked Albert Doyle, "AAA says average that you spent about $4,500 on gas last year?" To which he replied: "It wouldn't surprise me because I spent more than that sometimes."

Doyle runs a janitorial business and says one month he spent $2,000 on gas.

"It's always when the holidays come around. They drop it down but after the holiday, sky high rocketing. Back up," he said.

AAA says fuel costs in 2011 broke the previous one year high from 2008- by more than 200 dollars. Consumers we caught up with were fed up.

"Now all the have to say is their going to do something to a pipeline or a hurricane is coming or a big wind storm.... gas prices going up," said David Oliver.

The prices right now are still 17 cents more than they were on this day one year ago.

"It does not surprise me. It's gone up and down. I think it's going to go up even more. Really, I really do," added Gerber.

Analysts are now saying a potential conflict in Iran could push the prices even higher- throwing around that $5 a gallon figure.

"What are you going to do? You know, you pull up to the pump, you pay what's there. You want to search? You waste gas searching," added Gerber.

Virginia's still pay less than the national average for gasoline which sits at $3.27. Right now, in Virginia the average is $3.17.

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