LONDON (AP) _ Members of the Automobile Association have approved a $1.8 billion takeover by Centrica PLC, owner of British Gas.

The plan won overwhelming approval Thursday from AA members, who each will each receive $386 as part of the deal.

Two-thirds of the AA's 4.4 million members participated in the vote, and 96 percent of them voted for it, the AA said.

The AA is the country's leading motoring organization and provides breakdown services for 9.5 million drivers. It earned a pretax profit in 1998 of $31.5 million on sales of $1.0 billion.

Centrica sells gas and electricity to homes and businesses. It posted an operating profit last year of $333 million on sales of $11.97 billion.

The deal is expected to be completed next week.

The AA's main competitor, RAC, was acquired by Lex Service in April in a $703 million deal.