RACQ regional manager Colin Goodsell.
RACQ regional manager Colin Goodsell. FILE

Cry out over Rocky's dear fuel

ROCKHAMPTON drivers fed up with paying some of the highest prices for fuel in Queensland have one option – all you can do is complain.

RACQ Central Queensland regional manager Colin Goodsell said the motoring body wouldn’t stop campaigning for “fair” fuel prices, and motorists shouldn’t give up either.

Unleaded petrol prices have idled around $1.28 per litre in Rockhampton for months now, which is up to 10 cents dearer than a lot of other places in the state.

Mr Goodsell said motorists still craved some regulation on prices and needed to ask for the help of local politicians to get their point across.

“I don’t know why motorists would want to continue accepting pricing in Rockhampton,” Mr Goodsell said.

“People are stopping me in the street and saying, ‘Why can’t somebody do something about it?’

“At the moment oil companies are charging a premium price for their product and the simple fact is there’s nothing stopping them from doing that.

“When you compare Rockhampton with other centres (like Mackay, Brisbane or Gladstone), the oil companies are certainly enjoying increased margins at the expense of motorists in Rockhampton.”

But he said unless there was evidence of collusion the government’s consumer watchdog, the ACCC, was not likely to get involved.

Mr Goodsell said until some of the independent service stations started being more active in the market there wouldn’t be enough competition to reduce petrol prices in Rockhampton.

As for motorists, Mr Goodsell said their best option was to keep raising the issue, especially with local politicians and other people who have power and influence in the community.

“The people who are stopping me in the street and talking to me about it shake their heads and they’re extremely disappointed.”

Mr Goodsell also said people could cut back on fuel consumption by rethinking what trips they make and keeping their cars well maintained, such as having tyres properly inflated.

Meanwhile, a new survey has shown Thursday has become the cheapest day to buy petrol – a day when fewer than 2% of motorists fuel up.

Motoring body NRMA wants oil companies and servos to explain why the cheapest day to buy fuel has quietly changed from Wednesday to Thursday during the past three weeks.

It’s the first change to the weekly price cycle since 2004, when it moved from Tuesday to Wednesday.

Fuel prices

The average price of unleaded petrol yesterday:

Rockhampton 127.1

Brisbane 127.4

Gladstone 125.1

Dalby 119.3

Emerald 126.7

Mackay 118.8

Toowoomba 116.6

Townsville 119.2

Source: RACQ website

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