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Sonoma County drivers very likely may be paying record high prices for gas.

AAA on Friday reported that its price survey on Thursday showed the average price for regular in the Santa Rosa area was $4.513 a gallon — just 4 cents shy of the record of $4.55 set on June 19, 2008. With many stations having raised their prices since Thursday, it seems reasonable that the average has gone over $4.55. For example, Costco in Santa Rosa was $4.27 on Friday, up 18 cents from Thursday’s $4.09.

Patrick DeHaan, a senior petroleum analyst for gasbuddy.com, said “it’s certainly possible” that Santa Rosa’s price will break the record if it hasn’t already.

He offered some hope for drivers, saying price increases “will start slowing down over the weekend” before leveling off over two weeks to a statewide average of $4.60 to $4.80. It was $4.486 on Thursday — the highest in the nation.

“Prices go up faster than they go down,” he acknowledged.

“It’ll take a long time for them to drop to where they were a week ago,” he said.

Thursday’s $4.513 average in Santa Rosa was 16.1 cents more than Wednesday’s $4.352. A week ago, the average was $4.145. A year ago, it was $3.845.

Among the metro areas surveyed daily by AAA, San Francisco had Thursday’s highest average at $4.596, while Modesto was the lowest at $4.311.

The statewide average of $4.486 beat even Hawaii, which is typically the highest and which was only $4.414 on Thursday. South Carolina had the national low at $3.485.

The California price spike is blamed by analysts on a drop in gas production caused by a power failure Monday at Exxon Mobile’s 150,000-barrel-a-day refinery in Torrance near Los Angeles — it had resumed full operations by Friday; an Aug. 6 fire that cut production at Chevron’s Richmond refinery; maintenance closure of Phillps 66 refineries in Rodeo in the East Bay and in Arroyo Grande; and the shutting of a Chevron oil pipeline from Kern County to Bay Area refineries.

In Sonoma County, prices at some stations are nearing $5 a gallon. At the Stewarts Point Store on Highway 1, it was $4.99, and “it’s going up,” a clerk said.

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Comments

6 Comments

  1. Missy

    And yet this county will only vote for Democrats, and yes it is their fault. They are charging an extra 35.3 cents per gallon of gas at the pump and the feds charge 18.5 cents per gallon of gas at the pump. Too much? Well then why are you still voting for the Dems for everything? They are the ones that RAISE TAXES and SPEND your money.

    October 5th, 2012 1:52 pm

  2. Dave

    If the power cut was Thursday why were the prices higher earlier in the week and last week? Poor excuse for bilking.

    October 5th, 2012 1:54 pm

  3. David

    I blame the Republicans, who are obviously aliens from outer space…it’s your fault aliens! Deport ‘em befor they levy another tax cut on the rich!

    October 5th, 2012 2:23 pm

  4. Road.Warrior

    OK. That’s enough political comments for today. Anyone actually affected by the high prices? Canceling vacation or trips? Hurting business? Etc.

    October 5th, 2012 3:19 pm

  5. Safedriver

    Our family can’t afford a higher gas budget so these days we go to work and back and stop for groceries on the way home and that’s it. Our entertainment is spent at home. Our gas tanks remain near empty this week. We go for walks a lot.

    October 5th, 2012 4:31 pm

  6. John

    How about a nation wide boycott on ALL OIL COMPANIES!
    If everyone stopped buying gas for 2 days it would send a message to the Oil Giants that we are not going to take being gouged anymore! Everytime there is a fire or refinery shut down the prices sky rocket the next day! B.S.! So lets start taking back control of our nation! We need to organize a 2 day boycott against buying ANY & ALL OIL PRODUCTS! This means don’t buy any gas, no oil changes NOTHING with oil in it period! Sure your local gas station owners will be in shock but not that bad since most of the gas stations are owned by the oil companies anyway. We need to do this so those fat cat oil companies that are making billions a quarter off of our hard earned dollar stop controlling our livelyhood anymore! IMAGINE A NATION WHERE GAS PRICES ARE UNDER 3 DOLLARS A GALLON AGAIN! If we do not do this then expect higher food prices and everything that is transported to the store will adventually be higher too because as you know they will have to pass the increase of higher shipping on to the consumer which is us! Our paycheck always stays the same or decreased because of some budget cut while the cost of living goes up! Whats fair about that? SO LETS DO THIS! ORGANIZE AGAINST OIL FAT CATS STEALING OUR MONEY!
    AND FOR THE RECORD! THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS DEMOCRAT OR REPUBLICANS ANYMORE! IT IS JUST A TITLE TO KEEP PEOPLE SEPARATED! WE ARE HARD WORKING AMERICANS AND WE ARE ALL BEING TREATED THE SAME AT THE PUMP! HOW LONG DO YOU REALLY WANT TO PUT UP WITH THIS? DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT NOW!!!

    October 7th, 2012 11:39 am

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