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Auto Club: Gas Prices Skyrocket By 30+ Cents - Fastest Rate And Highest Price In Four Years

Photo by Casey Fiesler cfiesler/ licenses/by/4.0/

Southern California gas prices are at their highest levels since 2015 after jumping last week by more than 30 cents a gallon in most areas - the biggest one-week jump since 2015 after the Torrance refinery shut down due to massive damage from an explosion, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California's Weekend Gas Watch. The retail statewide average is $4.15 a gallon for regular unleaded, which is 31 cents higher than last week, 52 cents higher than a month ago and the highest statewide average since May 19, 2014.
The average price of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area is $4.24 per gallon, which is up 34 cents from than last week, 57 cents higher than a month ago, and 38 cents higher than last year. In San Diego, the average price is $4.19, which is 34 cents higher than last Thursday, 56 cents higher than last month, and 38 cents higher than last year. On the Central Coast, the average price is $4.18, which is 27 cents higher than last week, 46 cents higher than last month, and 34 cents higher than last year. In Riverside, the average per-gallon price is $4.16, which is 37 cents higher than last week, 59 cents higher than last month, and 41 cents higher than last year. In San Bernardino, the $4.15 average price is 33 cents higher than last week, 55 cents higher than last month, and 38 cents higher than a year ago today.

"The good news is that Los Angeles wholesale gasoline prices have dropped sharply in the last two days after refiners began selling off gasoline and there are indications that refinery production problems are ending,” said Auto Club spokesman Jeffrey Spring. “However, drivers are not likely to see much relief at the pump quickly, since retail prices have shot up by over 50 cents and are typically much slower to decline after a sharp increase.”

Gas prices began increasing rapidly last month after Saudi Arabia oil production facilities were attacked, and the increases sharpened after three Los Angeles-area refineries slowed or halted production due to maintenance issues and no imported gasoline was available to make up for the shortfall. Local refineries had already cut back production of summer blend gasoline in anticipation of switching to selling the winter blend beginning Nov. 1, creating even more of a shortage.  

The Weekend Gas Watch monitors the average price of gasoline. As of 9 a.m. on Oct. 3, averages are:



 1-week change

Record Price

Los Angeles – Long Beach


 +34 cents

 $4.70 (10/9/12)





Orange County


 +33 cents

 $4.69 (10/8/12)





San Diego


 +34 cents

 $4.72 (10/8/12)





Santa Barbara – Santa Maria –Lompoc


 +27 cents

 $4.70 (6/21/08)




+37 cents

$4.68 (10/8/12)





San Bernardino


 +33 cents

 $4.68 (10/8/12)







 +33 cents

 $4.68 (10/7/12)







 +28 cents

 $4.64 (10/9/12)

Media Contacts

Marie Montgomery
(714) 420-0477 (cell)
CST 1016202-80 Copyright © Automobile Club of Southern California. All Rights Reserved.
The Automobile Club of Southern California is a member club affiliated with the American Automobile Association (AAA) national federation and serves members in the following California counties: Inyo, Imperial, Kern, Los Angeles, Mono, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Tulare, and Ventura.