DRIVERS hit by a rise in fuel prices as lockdown measures are eased.

After three months of price drops, the average price of a litre of petrol has jumped by more than 3p during June, according to data from RAC Fuel Watch.

More cars are back on the road as lockdown measures ease, with increased demand seeing prices rise.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: “The pump price rises witnessed in June will have been a nasty shock to the system for drivers. While those who continued to drive regularly throughout the pandemic will have benefitted from some very low prices, millions won’t have so will be disappointed that just as they start to drive more again prices are on the up.

“It is, of course, the lack of demand for fuel which caused prices to drop in the first place so sadly it’s no great surprise that they’re on the rise again now.

“But drivers should take quite a lot of comfort from the fact that both petrol and diesel are a whopping 17p a litre cheaper than they were at the end of January. That means a tank of fuel is on average £9 less than it was then.

“And with RAC data predicting this weekend could be the busiest of the year so far on the roads that’s at least a little bit of better news, particularly as the direction of travel for fuel prices is upwards."

Petrol prices have risen by 3.74p per litre, from an average of 107.11p to 110.85p, while diesel is up 2.89p per litre, rising from 112.07p to 114.96p.

Lockdown price drops were driven by supermarkets, with many selling petrol for as low as £1 per litre helping to bring the petrol average to a low of 106.48p on May 19. Diesel saw an average of 111.8p on the same date.

However, RAC Fuel Watch says the ‘big four’ supermarkets are also now driving increases, with Morrisons, in particular, bumping up the price of both fuels by about 7p per litre, followed closely by Asda.

More price hikes are expected over the next few weeks.

Mr Williams added: “Oil producer group OPEC and its allies are continuing to restrict output which has successfully driven up the barrel price and that can only mean one thing for drivers in the coming weeks – higher prices.

“This is confirmed by RAC Fuel Watch data which shows that petrol is likely to go up by 2p a litre in the next fortnight. Diesel, however, shouldn’t rise much at all unless retailers use the saving in its slightly lower wholesale price to subsidise petrol."