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High Gas Prices In Westport, State May Fall Soon

WESTPORT, Conn. – Gas prices in Westport and across the state are once again reaching nation-leading levels. But experts from AAA predict that fuel costs will soon drop.

Connecticut’s gas prices were the highest in the continental U.S. as of Tuesday afternoon, according to data from AAA . The average price for a gallon of regular unleaded in the state is $4.156, compared with a nationwide average of $3.859. Only Hawaii at $4.408 has a higher per-gallon average.

The state’s average gas price has risen more than 16 cents per gallon in the last month and about 40 cents from the low point on July 1. But prices are still well shy of the state’s all-time high, a $4.39-per-gallon average recorded July 9, 2008, and are predicted to go down.

“AAA expects the national average to decline in the coming months as demand drops off following the busy summer driving period, as refineries switch from summer-blend to less expensive winter-blend gasoline and as hurricane season draws to a close,” Michael Green, AAA media relations manager, wrote in his weekly update on gas prices.

Fairfield County is the hardest hit across the state, AAA’s data says. The Bridgeport metropolitan area, which covers most of southwestern Connecticut, pays a current average of $4.233 per gallon, compared with 4.133 in Hartford, $4.138 in New Haven and $4.121 in the Norwich-New London area.

For the bargain-hunters, Westport’s lowest gas prices Tuesday afternoon were found at the Gulf station, 690 Post Road E., where regular unleaded was $4.14 a gallon, according to GasBuddy.com. The stations offering the next cheapest gas were the Sunoco at 322 Post Road E. and the Citgo on Wilton Road.

Until prices drop, AAA also offers a few tips for drivers looking to save money on gas:

? Consolidate trips and errands to cut down on driving time and miles traveled. Find one area where you can take care of banking, grocery shopping and other errands.

? Slow down. The faster a vehicle travels the more fuel it burns.

? Avoid quick starts and sudden stops. This wastes fuel, is harder on vehicle components and increases the odds of a crash.

? Lighten the load. Don’t haul unnecessary weight in the passenger compartment, trunk or cargo area of your vehicle. A heavier vehicle uses more gas.

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