Gas Prices Continue Spiking As Imports Dry Up, Refinery Production Slows

Oil barrels by Ian Burt
Photo by Ian Burt  https://www.flickr.com/photos/oddsock/ creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/  

Southern California gas price averages are racing toward $4 a gallon due to supply tightness caused by local refinery issues and a lack of available imported gasoline to make up the shortfall, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California's Weekend Gas Watch. The retail statewide average is $3.84 a gallon for regular unleaded, which is 12 cents higher than last week.
 
The average price of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area is $3.90 per gallon, which is up 12 cents from than last week, 33 cents higher than a month ago, and 16 cents higher than last year. In San Diego, the average price is $3.85, which is 11 cents higher than last Thursday, 28 cents higher than last month, and 15 cents higher than last year. On the Central Coast, the average price is $3.91, which is 13 cents higher than last week, 24 cents higher than last month, and 18 cents higher than last year. In Riverside, the average per-gallon price is $3.79, which is 12 cents higher than last week, 29 cents higher than last month, and 18 cents higher than last year. In San Bernardino, the $3.82 average price is 12 cents higher than last week, 27 cents higher than last month, and 17 cents higher than a year ago today.

"The California Energy Commission reported yesterday that the state’s unleaded gasoline inventories are down 21 percent from the previous week, refinery production of unleaded fuel is down by 18 percent, and West Coast gasoline inventories are at their lowest level since early May,” said Auto Club spokesman Jeffrey Spring. “Unplanned maintenance issues at the Chevron and Marathon refineries in Los Angeles County are the primary reason. Also, Oil Price Information Service reports that Southern California received no imported gasoline in the last week. These factors are continuing the spike that began after the attacks on Saudi Arabia’s oil infrastructure earlier this month.”

The Weekend Gas Watch monitors the average price of gasoline. As of 9 a.m. on Sept. 26, averages are:

Area

Regular

 1-week change

Record Price

Los Angeles – Long Beach

$3.90

 +12 cents

 $4.70 (10/9/12)

 

 

 

 

Orange County

$3.88

 +13 cents

 $4.69 (10/8/12)

 

 

 

 

San Diego

$3.85

 +11 cents

 $4.72 (10/8/12)

 

 

 

 

Santa Barbara – Santa Maria –Lompoc

$3.91

 +13 cents

 $4.70 (6/21/08)

 

Riverside

$3.79

+12 cents

$4.68 (10/8/12)

 

 

 

 

San Bernardino

$3.82

 +12 cents

 $4.68 (10/8/12)

 

 

 

 

Ventura

$3.88

 +11 cents

 $4.68 (10/7/12)

 

 

 

 

Bakersfield

$3.78

 +6 cents

 $4.64 (10/9/12)

Media Contacts

Marie Montgomery
(714) 885-2333
Montgomery.Marie@aaa-calif.com
Jeffrey Spring
(714) 885-2333
Spring.Jeffrey@aaa-calif.com