'Over the barrel'

I have never written a letter to the editor before today, but I'm just about fed up with the price of gas around here. I just returned from a trip to Portland today. While I was there, I filled my truck up with regular unleaded for $1.59 per gallon. I drove to Hood River (took me about 45 minutes, not enough time for anything drastic to have happened) and found the gas prices here averaged from $1.89 per gallon on up to $2.09! And people wonder why we spend our money somewhere else whenever we have the chance? You can't convince me that it costs an extra 30 cents per gallon to get the gas another 61 miles. It's too bad that our local businesses have most of us over the barrel.

Aaron and Teresa Swafford

Hood River

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Lawnmower torches Arbor Vitae on Portland Drive

The riding lawn mower driven by Norma Cannon overheated and made contact with dry arbor vitae owned by Lee and Norma Curtis, sending more than a dozen of the tightly-packed trees up in flames. The mower, visible at far right, was totaled. No one was injured; neighbors first kept the fire at bay with garden hoses and Westside and Hood River Fire Departments responded and doused the fire before it reached any structures. Westside Fire chief Jim Trammell, in blue shirt, directs firefighters. The video was taken by Capt. Dave Smith of Hood River Fire Department. Enlarge



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