People carry banners during a protest against the rise in gasoline prices in Mexico City, Mexico on January 9, 2017.
Anadolu Agency—Getty Images
By Julia Zorthian
January 12, 2017

For drivers below the Mexican border, the gas is too expensive — and many are crossing the border for lower prices.

Protestors of Mexico’s “gasolinazo,” a 20% hike in fuel prices the government enacted to open the market up to foreign businesses, have blocked gas distribution centers in the Mexican state of Baja, Calif., Bloomberg reports. This prevents stations from refilling. And as a result, Bloomberg reports a steady flow of vehicles has been waiting in 4-5 hours of traffic to cross the border into the U.S. and fill up their gas tanks.

“Right now, it’s crazy,” Rodrigo Marquez, an employee at a Shell station five blocks from the border in Calexico, Calif., told Bloomberg. “We are having a lot, lot of people, everybody is fueling up their tanks.”

After people fill up their tanks in the U.S., they head back to the border to wait another 2 hours. In areas where people are able to buy gas, people are paying around $2.815 per gallon right now in Mexico—roughly 10 cents higher per gallon than in California.

 

One protestor in Mexico City told The Guardian why citizens were outraged with the sudden price increase. “It’s not because we all have cars,” Héctor Pérez told The Guardian. “When gasoline prices go up, everything else goes up: tortillas, public transportation, everything.”

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