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Pikeville's gas price war

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BLEDSOE COUNTY, TN (WRCB) -

A war broke out in Pikeville Monday night and continued into the afternoon hours, but not the kind that requires military personnel,  we're talking about a battle of gas prices. 

Two convenience stores started it when one lowered the price of a gallon of regular unleaded. At the lowest point, the price hit a dollar a gallon and police were needed to direct traffic.

Pikeville Tobacco and Beverage sits right across the street from the Super X-press Mart on Main street, both owners say they want to have the lowest gas prices in town and neither of them are backing down. 

" It's a gas war and I guess it will continue until we run out of gas or until they run out of gas," said Becky Mounts, Pikeville Tobacco and Beverage. "That's just the way it has to work."

Becky Mounts has been changing the gas price all  morning. 

"Business is business... if you're going to go lower then by God I'm going to go lower and if you think your going to make a dollar off of somebody, well I'm not going to let you," said Mounts. 

Both gas stations started at $2.07 per gallon, prices slowly went down went down to $1.88 per gallon by mid-afternoon. Monday night they were down to $1.00 and a $1.01 across the street. 

 " It's crazy, they're losing money and it's crazy," said Mounts. 

Still, when Becky sees her competition change their sign, she runs to change hers too. 

 " We've always in the 4 years that I've been here, we've always had to stay 2 or 3 cents lower than them," said Mounts. "Frankie said the lowest he would go is $0.59 cents. We will go down if he goes down. If he goes lower, we will go lower and we will make sure everybody in Pikeville knows this." 

Across the street we find manager Drew Patel, watching Becky's sign closely. 

 "Yea it's a little hectic right now but we don't do this everyday but every now and then we've got to get down like this," said Patel. 

The line wrapped around the block Monday night and police had to help direct traffic at one point. The Pumps stayed busy on Tuesday, customers say they're happy with the low prices. 

"It's just gas we all have it get it one way or the other," said one customer. 

Both owners say the competition is all about the customers.

"I just got back and we are going to lower it for customer appreciation," said Patel. 

"Drew wants to bring it on....then bring it on," said Mounts. " I guess we will continue to lower and lower and lower until he's out of gas or we are out of gas and Pikeville wins and customers should win because that's the way it should be." 

The price for regular went back up to $2.03 cents after hours of fierce competition on Tuesday. Both owners point the finger at their competition for going up first. They say they will remain at the same rate for now but if their competition goes down, they'll have to go down too. 

This isn't the first time these two convenience stores have tried to battle it out for the best price. Patel says the last  gas-price war was about 2-years-ago and it's far from over. The two gas stations say they both will continue to offer up the same price or lower for their customers.   

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