The national average for a gallon of regular gas rose in one day from $2.45 Thursday to $2.52 Friday, the American Automobile Association reported. Among the state's eight major metro areas, Buffalo was tied with Albany and Syracuse for the lowest average price, according to AAA data.
"When the hurricane came in, and it hit Texas".
Closure of roughly a quarter of the US refining industry sparked fears of fuel shortages before the Labor Day weekend and cast doubts on refinery demand for crude.
It represents a 16.7 percent rise in the average price from a year ago. As ports from Corpus Christi, Texas to Lake Charles, La. begin to reopen, although with restrictions, and some USA refineries in Texas begin to resume operations, oil markets calmed a bit Friday. "We're really going to need to sort of play a bit of a waiting game to see when we can get gas prices back to a more normal level".
"Unfortunately with the price spikes we're seeing, it could encourage some people to say home", he said.
Gas price increases are not expected to be as severe as they were after Hurricane Katrina, however, when prices increased as much as 80 cents per gallon.
Meanwhile, the US Energy Department on Thursday released 1 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and a White House adviser said more could flow after Tropical Storm Harvey inundated Gulf Coast refineries and drove up motor fuel prices.
Before fuel prices stabilize, AAA's Maguire said drivers should frequent stations offering the lowest prices, which in the Commonwealth likely won't be lower than $2.20 a gallon. "So I have a little lifeline", Luchtman said.
Refineries serving Chicago have not yet hinted about fuel shortages, said Mario Orlandi, an operations manager at Olson Service Co, which supplies diesel and gasoline to the area.
"Without the ability to do so, we have inventories growing", Leonard said.
Gas cost $2.29 a gallon when Raymond Germain drove up to a line at of 15 cars waiting to fill up at B.J.'s Wholesale.
Still, the sporadic shortages are coming on the eve of Labor Day weekend, traditionally a time when motorists take to the road and demand for gasoline is high. Additionally, Sitton pointed out the United States has 230 million barrels of oil in reserve in case of an actual shortage.
However, there are still many unknowns, according to AAA, including how soon all of the refineries may be able to return to full operational status.
Without the 600,000 b/d of gasoline exports from the U.S. Gulf Coast, the entire Atlantic basin will be competing for a smaller pool of supply, increasing prices at the pump from NY to Buenos Aires.