Even with the expected bump in gas prices ahead of the upcoming holiday, Miami overall enjoys fuel prices consistently lower than the state average.

MIAMI — Miamians are lucky as far as gas prices go.

While the national average gas price has gone up, Miami remains relatively steady.

A quick survey of stations along North Main and Steve Owens Blvd. at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, June 28, showed one location at $2.41 for unleaded self-serve regular gas, another at $2.42 and three others at $2.55.

The statewide average of regular gas Thursday was $2.56, which is still cheaper than the national average of $2.85.

By comparison, a week ago the state average was $2.591 and it was $2.690 at the same time again a month ago and $1.95 a year ago.

“We’re going to be in good shape as far as gas prices,” said Mark Madeja of AAA Oklahoma’s Tulsa office. “The main driver on this whole thing is OPEC loosening the restrictions on export and output. That should help us.”

Madeja predicts state prices “will hold steady or head down.”

Oklahoma remains one of the nation’s top 10 least expensive markets, followed by South Carolina, $2.50, and Mississippi and Alabama, $2.54, according to the AAA.

Arkansas and Missouri are also among the 10 lowest; Arkansas sixth at $2.60 and Missouri is 10th at $2.63.

Hawaii is the most expensive, $3.73, followed by California at $3.71.

By comparison, the average price in Joplin is $2.52.

Oklahoma prices are 12 cents cheaper than a month ago, but 58 cents more than a year ago.

“The good news is I don’t think we are going to be climbing up to that $3 or $3.25 range,” Madeja said. “There could be a bump before the Fourth of July because there normally is.”

And there was, with prices going up locally by about 11 cents as of Saturday, June 30.

The Oklahoma Turnpike Authority reminds drivers to practice safe habits while on the road during the time before, during and after the holiday.

• Buckle up, observe the speed limit and stay alert.

• Be cautious and attentive in work zones and always keep your hands on the wheel.

• Avoid cell phone use while operating your vehicle, and remember, it’s against the law to text while driving.

• Have your vehicle’s tire and systems checked before heading out on long road trips.

• Never leave a child or pets alone in a car, not even for a minute.

• Plan trips ahead and allow ample time to reach your destination.

• Charge your cell phone before leaving.

• Keep water on hand.

“This one is off the charts,” Madeja said of holiday travel. “Since we’ve been keeping records on holiday travel for 18 years, this is by far the biggest Fourth of July.”

He said one of those factors is that the holiday falls midweek.

“People are taking holidays either before or after or they’re taking the whole week,” Madeja said. “Roads are going to be crowded. We definitely want to warn people that if they are going somewhere, allow plenty of time to get there and you should pack up your patience because you’re going to need it.”