SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF/CNN) — Sticker shock at San Francisco Bay Area gas pumps was beginning to reach panic levels early Monday as prices surged to more than $4.85 a gallon, setting a new record for the state for a second day in a row.
Prices were pushing $5 in some areas, including in Humboldt County, where the average price was $4.97 Monday.
Doug Shupe, a spokesperson for AAA, said that although Californians are used to paying more for gas, the price has been much higher lately.
“Drivers are paying $1.50 more per gallon than a year ago,” Shupe said. “It means the person who has the typical midsize sedan with a 14 gallon size fuel tank, they’re paying $21 more to fill up that tank today than last year.”
Rep. Karen Bass, appearing Sunday on CNN’s Jake Tapper “State of the Union,” said something needs to be done to hold down the prices.
“The median price is $4. And in many places, it’s $5,” Bass said. “I know that the oil industry said that one of the reasons for the increase in price was because they had to slow down production because they had to do some maintenance. We have got to reduce the price of gas in California.”
AAA said heavy rainstorms in Northern California have pinched production capacity, which then trickled down to Southern California — just what happened in Louisiana with Hurricane Ida.
“It’s a bit of a supply crunch we have right now, there’s nothing major, until the refineries in Northern California can get back up to full production capacity,” Jeffrey Spring, Corporate Communications Manager of the Automobile Club of Southern California, said.
“What’s happening up in the Bay Area indicates that maybe we’re at the tippy top of this price increases, barring any other issues,” Spring added. “So we’re hoping by the end of the year that things will start heading downward.”
According to Gas Buddy there were some deals to be had if you are willing to drive a few miles.
Safeway Express on San Pablo Ave. in Hercules was at $4.19 a gallon; the Valero on Whipple Ave. in Redwood City was at $4.21 and at the ABE on Mission Blvd in Hayward and the Redwood City Costco was at $4.25