Harvey could cause spike in area gas prices - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Harvey could cause spike in area gas prices

(Source: WTOC) (Source: WTOC)

Harvey is now being blamed for rising gas prices across the U.S., and the impacts could be felt here in Georgia and South Carolina.

Experts say it will only get higher in the coming days until the waters in Houston recede.

Several oil and gas refineries along the Texas Coast have temporarily shut down as the area recovers from the storm. If these refineries are shut down for more than a few days, motorists in the Southeast could see increases at the pump.

AAA says gas prices could increase from 5 to 25-cents per gallon over the next several days. In Savannah, prices averaged about $2.28 per gallon Wednesday. That's about 7-cents higher than last week. Just overnight, the average price for a gallon of gas inched up 3-cents.

An increase in energy costs from Harvey could extend beyond the pump.

"People will see higher prices trickle through, not just higher gas prices but also perhaps higher prices for fruits and vegetables as it costs more to get them to markets, and a higher price for the airline tickets to go visit your mother at Christmas time," says Peter Morci, Economist.

Historically, when prices rise due to natural disasters, things are short-lived meaning weeks of higher prices and not months.

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