Santa Clarita motorists have seen a bit of a crunch at the pump over the last several days as worries over infrastructure damaged during Hurricane Harvey push prices upward.
Though we don’t get any fuel from the Gulf Coast, we’ve seen an increase, according to Automobile Club of Southern California spokesperson Marie Montgomery.
“Everybody in the country and in fact other countries are seeing price increases,” she said.
Metropolitan areas are seeing a 12 to 13 cent per gallon increase each week, but our gas prices have gone up much less than those who are directly impacted by the loss of refineries in Texas.
Prices in Santa Clarita surged about 20 cents per gallon over the last week.
Reports of prices in the Los Angeles area increasing due to Labor Day weekend were not entirely accurate, Montgomery said.
“It’s a lot for a holiday,” she explained. “I’ve never recalled seeing a double digit price increase over a holiday weekend.”
Because Southern California refineries are part of a national supply chain, worries over the lack of fuel in Texas and the growing potential for the need to supplement the loss of oil and gasoline stock are the primary reasons for why Santa Clarita and surrounding areas are seeing sticker shock.
“It was more the worry of what could happen if the refineries on the Gulf Coast don’t come back in a timely fashion,” Montgomery said.
Early Thursday morning, the lowest posted price for gasoline in the Santa Clarita Valley was $2.93 at Sam’s Club in Canyon Country, according to GasBuddy.
The highest? $3.49 at 76 on The Old Road in Castaic.
“We’re hoping it’s temporary,” Montgomery said. “We’re already seeing a downward movement in the wholesale and the rack prices.”
The AAA spokesperson said refineries in Corpus Christi, Texas were expected to be online by the end of this week.
However, one of the nation’s largest refineries in Port Arthur, Texas will be offline for a considerable amount of time.