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Fill up on good news: Fuel price drops

Fuel pump petrol diesel
Picture: Pexels (Skitterphoto)

By Kaya 959 News

Expect to pay less for petrol from today. Petrol 93 and 95 will decrease by 10c per litre.

But diesel users will be forking out more per litre. Diesel 0.05% will increase by 20c per litre. Diesel 0.005% will increase by 21c per litre and illuminating paraffin will increase by 20c.

“Whether you benefit from a decrease or face an increase, now is a good time for South African drivers to remind themselves how changing even just a few bad driving habits can make a considerable difference,” said MasterDrive CEO, Eugene Herbert.

The AutoMobile Association said the Rand continued to strengthen against the US dollar throughout May, while international oil prices remained mostly flat.

But the sharp spike in oil at the start of the month is still spilling over into the data, with the prices of refined diesel having seen a bigger impact than petrol.

“This will be disappointing news for transport companies who rely on diesel. It will also not be welcomed by citizens who use illuminating paraffin for cooking, lighting, and especially heating during the winter months,” the AA said.

READ: Durban cop accused of forcing teens to drink petrol

Rand strengthens

The Association said the continuing strength of the Rand is good news though.

“For as long as our currency continues to put in strong performances against the US dollar, the impact of rebounding international oil prices will be softened,” the AA said.

Trade union, UASA said the substantial fuel price increase illuminating paraffin prices as announced by the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy hits ordinary consumers in the pocket as they will have to fork out extra cash for heating, cooking and transport.

“Low-income households that solely depend on paraffin for heating and cooking will feel the pain of the higher cost as winter has closed in and the struggle to keep warm now means paying more,” UASA’s Abigail Moyo said.

“With our sky-high unemployment rate, there will be even more pressure on struggling breadwinners without much disposable income,” she added.

Herbert said for many fleets, fuel costs are in the top three expenses.

“In a vehicle using 10L per 100km, defensive driving can reduce consumption by at least 1L/100km giving drivers a 9L per 100km consumption on a tank. This can result in a saving of at least R5 000 per year, per vehicle. Ultimately, defensive driving can teach drivers to reduce their fuel consumption by between 18 and 20%,” he explained.

Change driving behaviours

He said these kinds of savings are possible for every driver, with a few changes to driving habits.

“Try to reduce the amount of time that you come to a complete standstill. You use more petrol the more speed you need to regain momentum when driving. This includes anticipating traffic light changes and avoiding routes that have more stop/starts,” he said.

Herbert said the next tip is to avoid speeding.

“A reduction of your speed by between 20km/h and 30km/h can have fuel savings of up to 20%. This includes adjusting speed to the conditions. If bad weather causes surrounding vehicles to slow down, adjust your own speed to avoid unnecessary braking and acceleration,” he said. Speeding often also results in reckless driving and habits like swerving between lanes and tailgating other drivers which increases fuel consumption.

“There is much to be gained from a fleet that drives to save fuel. Along with a reduction in fuel consumption, you can see less wear-and-tear and have safer drivers who are involved in less collisions,” he said.

Tips to reduce fuel consumption:
  • Plan trips ahead of time to choose the most efficient routes

  • Keep your revs between 2500rpm and 3000rpm

  • Avoid idling for longer than 30 seconds

  • Ensure tyres are properly inflated. Under-inflated tyres increase consumption

  • Ensure maintenance is up-to-date

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