SEATTLE - Seattle drivers could see a huge increase in gas prices this weekend, according to a recent report from GasBuddy.com.
“I expect stations to increase prices as much as 10-35 cents per gallon by the conclusion of the weekend with some stations starting to raise prices immediately,” said Patrick DeHaan, a senior petroleum analyst at Gas Buddy.
DeHaan said low supplies on the west coast are leading to the sharp price increases, and that the highest prices in the country will likely soon be found in Oregon and Washington.
AAA told KIRO 7 last week that west coast stocks are at their lowest levels since May 1992.
“That’s due to a combination of factors, but among them is the problems with the refineries we’ve been having,” AAA spokesman Dave Overstreet said.
Problems like the BP Cherry Point refinery fire in February. The blaze shut the plant down and it still has yet to come back online. BP has dodged responsibility for spiking prices and said the plant was scheduled to be offline in May anyway.
There may be relief on the horizon, however.
“I expect the situation to slowly resolve itself over the next few weeks, but as gasoline prices tend to fall slowly, motorists may not have a sense of real relief until late June or July,” DeHann said.
As of early Wednesday morning, AAA had the average cost of a gallon of regular unleaded in Washington at $4.24.