The sharp rise in gasoline prices has brought dozens of drivers to the G. Gas garage in the Haifa Bay area to install liquefied petroleum gas (LPG ) systems in their cars.

"The last three days have been crazy," the garage owner, Sa'ar Bazak, said. "Israelis are funny. They could have come a month ago, or two months ago, when LPG was still about half of what gasoline costs."

But last night's price hike seemed to have been the last straw, Sa'ar said.

As opposed to diesel fuel, which years ago was much cheaper than gasoline but eventually the price overtook that of gasoline, the manufacturing process of LPG and very low pollution will not encourage price hikes, Sa'ar said.

George Geries, Hanna Siman and Mike Khoury, from the town of Fassuta on the Lebanese border, are partners in their own law firm in Haifa. Every day they drive at least 150 kilometers back and forth.

All three have installed an LPG system in their cars. "I drive 60,000 or 70,000 kilometers a year and save more than NIS 20,000. I don't care if the gas prices go up - I'm sure it won't reach the level of gasoline because the whole manufacturing process is much cheaper," Geries said.

"Just to think that we're each paying NIS 40,000 or NIS 50,000 on gasoline a year means the price hikes are unimaginable, especially when we're talking about private individuals who aren't getting their travel expenses paid for. So we just have to find an alternative," Siman said.