Nothing like a like a hurricane in the gulf of Mexico, a refinery fire in Venezuela, and an upcoming holiday weekend to create the perfect storm for higher gasoline prices.
Nationwide, gasoline prices rose a half-cent a gallon to $3.756 on average for regular unleaded, AAA reported.
"As of Tuesday afternoon four major refineries, totaling more than one-million barrels per day of refining capacity, have announced their planned closure. These refineries make up about half of the production capacity in the region where Hurricane Isaac is expected to make landfall," said Michael Green, Manager, AAA Public Relations.
Add to that, a deadly explosion and fire at Venezuela's largest oil refinery, and some experts predict price hikes of 5 to 15 cents a gallon by Labor Day.
Right now, the cheapest gasoline in Cranberry Township can be found at the Costco on Executive Drive, according to Pittsburghgasprices.com. Regular unleaded is selling there for $3.73 a gallon. From there, gas prices jump to $3.79 per gallon for regular unleaded at most gas stations.
In Zelienople, the cheapest gas is at the Kwik Fill on West New Castle Street. The price for regular unleaded is $3.70 per gallon.
For perspective, the average price of regular unleaded was selling for $3.71 a gallon a week ago, $3.48 a gallon a month ago, and $3.61 a gallon a year ago in the Pittsburgh area, according to AAA.