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Propane Increase Has People Concerned

Anna Edley looks in disbelief about the spike in propane prices.
Anna Edley looks in disbelief about the spike in propane prices.

(Mountain Top, Luzerne County) - Anna Edley and her family use propane to heat their Mountain Top home.

"October of 2013 it was $2.35," Edley said of the price she paid for a gallon or propane.

Since October she told Eyewitness News that they've seen quite an increase in how much they pay per gallon.

"On January 16th it was $3.00," she said. "January 30th was our highest at $3.50."

That's a difference of $1.15 in only four months.

The Edley's fill up their 100 gallon tank every two weeks.  So, they're paying an extra $230 to heat their home each month.

Anna's husband, Bill, said to try and save some money they're relying on a space heater, but it's not saving much.

"It's a double whammy because the electric is up too," Bill said. "There isn't a thing that went down!"

Peter's Bottled Gas Company, just down the road, in Wapwallopen delivers their propane.

Harry Peters is the owner of Peter's Bottled Gas Company. He said the unseasonably cold weather is just one reason to blame for the price spike.

He said the spike has roots with farmers in the Midwest.

The farmers use propane heaters to dry off their corn and since crops came in late they were competing with home heating companies for the propane, which drives the price up.

Peter's said during winter propane usually goes up 50 cents, but he told Eyewitness News the cost has doubled this winter.

The Edley's are hoping the spike doesn't continue. That's because Bil is supposed to retire in March. However, if the prices continue to spike that might not happen.

"We're trying to double this $3.50 and keep it in the bank," Anna said. "That way we're able to pay for the propane."

According to Pennsylvania Propane Gas Association there's also been more of a demand for propane in other countries, which also drives the price up.

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