About a year ago, I snapped this picture (above) at the new Cumberland Farms on Brayton Avenue in Fall River.

Workers had just installed the price sign and were testing it out when I snapped this photo to mess with people on my Facebook page. I never would have dreamed how close we'd actually get to those prices less than 12 months later.

As the SouthCoast and the world wrestle with the problem of how to deal with record-breaking gas prices, it's hard not to notice the wild variation in the cost of gas between similar gas stations.

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For example, the Mobil gas station next to the 99 Restaurant on Faunce Corner Road in Dartmouth has always been a bit more expensive than most other Mobil stations. I always chalked it up to the fact that it is a convenient location situated right off the highway. It's reasonable to assume that it is probably a more expensive piece of property from which to operate. I get that.

But am I the only one who does a double-take at the gas prices every time I drive by that station? Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the price differences between the Faunce Corner Mobil station and other nearby, comparable gas stations have become even starker.

Real estate brokers often talk about "comps," or similar properties to compare to set homes at a reasonable price. The closest "comp" to the Faunce Corner Mobil would probably be the Smith Mills Mobil station on the corner of Route 6 and Faunce Corner Road.  They are both Mobil stations (the Mobil brand has always tended to be priced higher) very close to each other.

A gallon of regular unleaded at the Smith Mills Mobil is $4.49, while right up the street on Faunce Corner Road, it is priced a full 50 cents higher a gallon.

At the new Bridge Street Mobil in Fairhaven, regular unleaded is $4.35, which is 64 cents a gallon cheaper.

The difference between the price of Super Unleaded, however, is nothing less than shocking. Super Unleaded at Bridge Street in Fairhaven is $4.99.  At Faunce Corner Road? $5.99!  A full dollar-a-gallon more expensive.  That's a pretty big deal while Americans are trying to watch every penny during this inflation crisis.

I'm sure there is a very good reason that the prices are so much more expensive at this Mobil station. I can't imagine the owners are happy that they need to price the gas so much higher than their competition. They have to do what is needed to navigate themselves through these tough times.

I just can't imagine there are many drivers that aren't noticing the huge difference in prices. When you're at a place like Gillette Stadium, sometimes you have to buy a $5 fountain drink. You're not happy about it, but if you're thirsty, you really don't have any other choice.

In this case, however, drivers do (somewhat) have a choice. The average cost of regular unleaded in Massachusetts is $4.44 today, according to Gas Buddy.

We made multiple calls to Faunce Corner Road Mobil ownership, but they were unavailable for comment.

Take a look at the most expensive gas stations around SouthCoast below, and sign up here for your chance to win a tank of free gas on Fun 107.

SouthCoast's 10 Most Expensive Gas Stations

In a snapshot of gas prices on the SouthCoast, here are the 10 most expensive places to buy gas.

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