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Idaho drivers stretch their budgets as gas prices soar

While letting your car run on fumes hurts your car’s engine, it could also leave you stranded in the middle of nowhere
Published: Jun. 17, 2022 at 5:03 PM MDT
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — Roads are becoming busier and busier as the temperatures get warmer and warmer, but gas prices are continuing to soar.

“We understand that everybody’s trying to stretch their fuel budget as much as possible,” said Matthew Conde, the communications director for AAA Idaho. “That distance between fill-ups, but obviously there are lots of better ways to do that than running all the way down to E and beyond.”

By trying to run on fumes, you’re putting your car at risk for long-term damage, and this could lead to you spending more to fix your car than you would on getting a tank of gas in the first place.

“Damage to your fuel line, your fuel pump in particular, that’s where you really start to see problems. Those can be quite expensive to replace,” said Conde.

While letting your car run on fumes hurts your car’s engine, it could also leave you stranded in the middle of nowhere. And that could lead to some more issues that are even bigger, not just for your car, but for your health as well.

“Somebody gets sick, sometimes people even die because they get stranded at the side of the road,” said Brianna Bodily, a spokesperson for the South Central Public Health District.

Heat exhaustion and heat stroke are the most common heat illnesses out there, and it’s important to know the warning signs.

“A rapid heart rate means your heart is working harder to cool your body down and circulate that blood,” said Bodily. “You might experience a fever, something you might want to watch out for is if you get wet and clammy, that’s a really bad sign, that means your body is working way too hard.”

Heat stroke is much more serious.

“If you move from wet and clammy to hot and dry, fever hot and dry, that means you’re not sweating anymore, and you are in a critically extreme situation where you actually need emergency care,” said Bodily.

So next time you’re on a long road trip and you come across a gas station, it may be worth the extra money you do spend.

“For the amount of time loss and for the amount of vehicle damage and other things that may occur, it’s just not worth it to push in quite that far,” said Bodily.

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