Gas price increase seems California specific


Gas prices shot up on Tuesday and according to petroleum analysts at, the spike is California specific.

They blame low fuel production on: the August Chevron Refinery fire in Richmond, high temperatures in Torrance that caused a power surge at Exxon Mobil, and maintenance on a crude oil pipe in Southern California.

"All of these refinery issues, coming together at the same time, is essentially the perfect storm, if you will," said Patrick Dehaan from

A pricey storm says is driving up wholesale gas prices for retailers who are then raising prices at the pump.

"There is not a shortage per se. There is more a perception of shortages," said gas price and oil forecaster Norman Higby from WMP Forecasts. He insists the reasons for the current gas price surge are false. "Everybody is jacking up their whole sale prices not because of current shortages, but what they anticipate to be shortages."

Higby says consumers are being held hostage by a shortage scare, that doesn't exist. However, everyone agrees prices are going up. And they'll continue going up - by as much as 10 cents a day this week, hitting California consumers, right where it hurts.

"It just keeps going up and the economy is not so good right now, so it is making it harder for us people," said Jose Padilla, a San Jose resident.

So what can we do? Higby says if consumers buy 10 percent less gas for the next few months, the demand will go down, and so will the prices.

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