Energy analysts are warning of a possible 10- to 20-cent spike in gasoline prices throughout California this week.
National gas price tracker GasBuddy.com said some Golden State locales might see a spike of up to 30 cents per gallon as the result of "refinery outages due to excessive heat and other related issues, as well as a continued outage at a Chevron facility due to fire this past summer."
An Aug. 6 fire at a key Chevron refinery in Richmond prompted a 25.8-cent spike in gasoline prices within just a few days, and prices have hardly moved since then.
Statewide, gas prices have been hovering around $4.05 a gallon.
This morning, AAA said the statewide average price of unleaded regular was $4.23 a gallon, up 5 cents from yesterday and up a dime from just one week ago.
"Prices that stations pay for gasoline have already increased by as much as 73 cents per gallon over the last week in some California markets, much of which has yet to hit retail pumps," said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy. "While wholesale increases do not always translate directly into immediate retail increases of the same amount, they certainly point to the direction for which motorists should be prepared.
"This situation could be similar to that of the (Aug. 6) refinery fire ... that impacted much of the West Coast, except now the worst is likely to occur in California."
Read more Thursday in The Sacramento Bee and at Sacbee.com.
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