Local residents planning on traveling on Memorial Day will see the highest prices at the pump in four years, according to AAA.
Gas prices have jumped 12 cents in the past two weeks, leading to a national average of $2.93 per gallon, with the average price in this area well over $3 per gallon. The jump comes days after President Donald Trump decision to withdraw the United States from the Iran nuclear deal.
“AAA forecasts nearly 37 million travelers will hit the road for the holiday weekend. Compared to an average of the last three Memorial Day weekends, pump prices are nearly 50 cents more expensive and climbing,” AAA spokesperson Jeanette Casselano stated. “Trends are indicating that this summer is likely to bring the national average to at least $3 per gallon.”
The current national average is up 58 cents from a year ago, 17 cents from a month ago and five cents more than a week ago. Officials said that a surge in crude oil exports, strong global demand, reduced production by OPEC and its partners, and strong US crude sales to foreign buyers are pushing up prices.
The tristate area remains one of the most expensive places to buy gas in the country, with an average of $3.07 in New York and $3.11 in Connecticut.
According to an AAA New York spokesman, the price has been affected by multiple factors, including the price of crude oil overseas and an increase in demand nationwide. It also comes at a time when refineries begin the process of transitioning from a winter blend of gasoline to a more eco-friendly, expensive, summer blend.
“Expensive crude oil prices, unrest in the Middle East, strong domestic demand, record production rates and global oil supply surplus have created the perfect storm to drive spring gas prices toward new heights,” Casselano noted.
“AAA forecast that two-thirds of the 88 million families taking vacations this summer plan to drive to their destination," Casselano said. "With more expensive gas prices on the horizon, travelers should plan now for the additional costs."
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