HAUPPAUGE - The turmoil in Libya and other parts of the Middle East is triggering higher gas prices across the country, which may lead many residents to stay on Long Island for vacations.

Prices at the pumps have soared 19 cents over the past three weeks across the country. The national average for a gallon of regular gas is now $3.76 a gallon, which is 91 cents higher than it was this time last year. On Long Island, it is $3.97.

Anthony Linsalata, of Deer Park, says he'll be looking to vacation with his son on the Island this summer to save gas. "I can't afford to go out to the city or down south anywhere because the gas prices for anything are going to be ridiculous," Linsalata says. Long Island hotspots such as Atlantis Marine World in Riverhead are betting on increased local tourism this year, which could be a boon for the local economy.