Americans witnessed gas prices soaring this week, but Californians witnessed them skyrocketing. The countrywide average gas price is $3.81 per gallon, whereas in California it exploded to $4.61 on Saturday – a jump of 47 cents in a week, making it the costliest gas in the U.S.
Reports suggest that gas prices are expected to continue soaring in the coming days as experts place the blame on a refinery shortage and power outage at a plant in Torrance.
It is pertinent to mention here that the soaring gas prices started with a huge fire at Chevron refinery located in the San Francisco area. Meanwhile reports suggest that Exxon Mobil refinery in South California is experiencing power outage and a crude oil pipeline in California is also out of order.
Gas has turned out to be a new gold in the Golden State where people are currently hurrying up to fill gas at a Los Angeles area station where the price is said to be $4.55 per gallon.
Meanwhile travel group AAA has attributed that the gas price hike to problems in supply and market volatility, saying pipeline disruptions and refinery issues have slashed gas supply. It also said that as winter approaches, preparedness for a seasonal switch has complicated the issue.
According to a representative of the Automobile Club of Southern California, local refineries have cut production and were exporting gas to Mexico and several other countries.
“What are they doing to us?” said Marilyn Tucker, a FedEx employee, as she stopped pumping at a central Los Angeles gas station at $37, well before the tank of her sedan was full, according to the NY Times. “It’s just ridiculous.”
According to reports, several gas stations in the surrounding of LA area shut down their pumps because of supply issues. They also hanged makeshift symbols at their stations, saying they were not responsible for the gas shortages.
Long lines of drivers were observed at gas stations across the state. There were also reports that some gas stations even increased the price to $5 per gallon for regular gasoline.