Average gas price hits record high in LA County

The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline in Los Angeles County rose seven-tenths of a cent to a record $6.466 today, topping the previous high of $6.462 set June 14.

The average price has risen 31 consecutive days, increasing $1.22, including 1 cent Sunday and 15.3 cents Thursday, the largest daily increase since the record 19.2-cent hike on Oct. 5, 2012, according to figures from the AAA and Oil Price Information Service.

The increases Sunday and Monday are the smallest since a half-cent increase Sept. 19.

The average price is 62.6 cents more than one week ago, $1.202 higher than one month ago and $2.05 greater than one year ago.

The streak of increases follows a run of 78 decreases in 80 days totaling $1.216 that began June 15, one day after the average price rose to a record $6.462.

The rising prices are the result of insufficient supply to meet demand caused in part by reduced production of gasoline from refineries undergoing maintenance, Marie Montgomery, a public relations specialist with the Automobile Club of Southern California, told City News Service.

The national average price rose three-tenths of a cent to $3.799, one day after an 11-day streak of increases totaling 12.6 cents ended with a decrease of four-tenths of a cent. It is 7.4 cents more than one week ago, three-tenths of a cent higher than one month ago and 60.3 cents greater than one year ago.

The national average price is $1.217 less than the record $5.016 set June 14.

The streak of increases followed a 98-day streak of decreases totaling $1.342 that began the day after the record high was set.

Gov. Gavin Newsom sent a letter to the California Air Resources Board on Friday directing it to take whatever steps are necessary to allow refineries to begin making and distributing winter-blend gasoline, which is cheaper to produce. Stations normally cannot start selling winter blend gas until Nov. 1.

In a video posted to Twitter, Newsom blamed oil companies, saying they were taking advantage of consumers to produce record profits.

“They’re ripping you off,” he said.

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