Feeling the fuel pinch

Four out of 10 British Columbians say rising gasoline prices are making it harder to afford necessities.

A new survey by pollster Angus Reid finds 33% of respondents are struggling to keep up with increases that have B.C. residents paying the highest prices in North America.

And that has them rethinking summer travel plans.

The poll finds seven out of 10 support a cap on gas prices, and 59% feel the provincial government isn’t doing enough to address the issue.

One-in-three (35%) say they have been driving less, and another quarter (26%) say they have been filling up less. Still others have travelled to other towns (18%) or across the U.S. border to buy fuel (7%)

Drivers living in rural areas are more likely to have noticed a major increase in gas prices (75%) and are more likely to say they’ve been struggling as a result (44%).

Across the country, there is considerable disagreement over the reasons for the increasing cost of filling up, the Reid notes.

"Federally, Conservative-minded Canadians overwhelmingly blame government taxes, while supporters of other federal parties are more likely to point a finger at oil companies trying to maximize profits," the Angus Reid Institute said in a press release.

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