FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA21) -- Gas prices sitting at or near $2.99 a gallon is a sign that the economy is on the rebound, but people aren't happy about it.
"Being a single parent, basically, and raising kids and gas is $3 a gallon. It's crazy," Kim Snoden said.
Snowden felt the sticker shock at the pump when she filled up near LaOtto Friday afternoon.
"I'm raising my two granddaughters and they're two and a half years old. And diapers and things are expensive and the gas, it's crazy. It's $3 a gallon and you're struggling to raise babies and gas is crazy. It adds up," she said.
Gas prices have been going up the past several months, but haven't hit that $3 mark since 2014.
Experts say you can blame the pandemic.
Demand dropped sharply when people were ordered to stay home, so OPEC in the Middle East drastically cut production of crude oil and has been slow to ramp production back up.
Storms early this year took out more than two dozen U.S. oil refineries, too, meaning those production issues are affecting prices.
Plus, now that people are getting vaccinated, have stimulus money to spend, and want to travel again, demand is up.
But some people say refinery owners and distributors are getting greedy.
"$3 a gallon because they want to line their pockets, we know it doesn't cost $40 for 13.25 gallons. Our economy needs to come back," Dustin Hicks said.
"I think we will see $3.49, $3.99 over the next three to four years," said gas station owner Adam Dager.
He says that's because gas and oil futures continue to rise, but wants you to know that the profit margin on gas is only about five to seven cents a gallon.
"We operate on a profit center of convenience, so whether it's Red Bull, Monster, vices like beer, cigarettes, things that come and go like that. And then of course deli is a huge target for us," he said.
Gas commodities experts say the conversion right now to pricier, higher-grade summer blend gasoline which cuts down on emissions that cause smog, will likely lead to prices even higher in the next few months than what we're seeing now.