Gas prices spike again, now up 17 cents since Harvey

  • Gas prices spike again, now up 17 cents since Harvey

Gas prices spike again, now up 17 cents since Harvey

Prices at the pump haven't budged much - yet.

On Thursday night, AAA released a study showing the national average stood at $2.45 per gallon, the highest so far this year.

The largest refinery in the United States, the Port Arthur Refinery, operated by Motiva Enterprises in Port Arthur, Texas, has been idled. A surge in demand along with reduced supply has caused intermittent outages at H-E-B fuel stations throughout the state.

Sitton also sat down with the Texas Tribune Thursday to talk about gas availability.

They said they expect prices to go back down at the end of September and early October. Right now IL gas prices average $2.50 a gallon. Gas prices are going up nationwide, and we're feeling the effects here on the Gulf Coast.

"I'm not anxious about the gas prices right now", she said.

In normal times, many drivers won't fill up their tank until they have just a quarter tank of gas or less.

The devastating aftermath of Hurricane Harvey is having an impact across the country.

"Northeast refiners are stepping in and barging supplies to the U.S. Southeast, the Caribbean, Mexico and South America to offset the lack of supply from Gulf Coast refineries and pipelines shut down due to Harvey", added Townsend.

Harvey, which stalled near Houston for days before moving east, remains a threat for heavy rains in portions of Louisiana and eastern Texas.

Over 16% of the country's daily gasoline refining capacity was offline as of Sunday, according to Goldman Sachs research.

"If you're looking out the windows and seeing the refineries - these tools that are supposed to be creating gasoline - are not working, that's why the market has reacted and the price has gone up", GasBuddy analyst Allison Mac said.

The No. 2 US refinery, ExxonMobil's (XOM) Baytown, Texas facility, is also offline and has suffered some roof damage. It runs underground and is now under water in many parts of Texas, where inspections are needed before it can be fully operational again, Colonial spokesman Steve Baker said Thursday. How the weather holds out will be a key factor in how quickly refineries reopening. The area from Corpus Christi to Lake Charles, Louisiana, now represents almost half of the country's refining capacity. Another in Hixson posted signs saying they were out due to supply issues. Six refineries have begun the process of assessing damage and restarting, which may take several days.

However, the extreme flooding could prevent some refinery workers from being able to return to work. "It's devastating to have your home flooded and deal with that emotional trauma".