AAA report finds Oregon gas prices among highest in the nation for spring break

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – Ahead of spring break travel, Oregonians are seeing an increase in gas prices, according to AAA.

The jump in gas prices comes amid a nationwide increase, with the national average for regular gas climbing 10 cents to $3.49 per gallon during the week of March 18, AAA said.

In Oregon, the average price jumped 15 cents to $4.10 per gallon, marking the sixth-largest weekly jump for a state.

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Oregon is also among the top five states with the highest gas prices in the nation, AAA says.

California has the most expensive gas at $4.92, followed by Hawaii ($4.70), Washington ($4.33), Nevada ($4.21), and Oregon at $4.10, AAA says – adding no states have seen average gas prices in the $2 range since Jan. 7, 2021, when Mississippi and Texas were below that threshold.

Several counties across Oregon are seeing average gas prices above $4 a gallon – including Clackamas ($4.12), Josephine ($4.29), Lane ($4.03), Multnomah ($4.11), Washington ($4.15), and Tillamook ($4.10) counties, AAA said.

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Diesel is also seeing an increase with the national average ticking up half a cent to $4.04 per gallon and the Oregon average also increasing half a cent to $4.20.

AAA said there are several factors contributing to the price increases, including crude oil prices, refinery maintenance, and a rising demand for fuel.

“Gas prices always rise this time of year as refineries undergo maintenance as the switch to summer-blend fuel occurs. And demand for gas increases, also putting upward pressure on prices. In addition, crude oil prices have climbed after drone attacks on Russian refineries,” says Marie Dodds, public affairs director for AAA Oregon/Idaho. “Russia is one of the world’s major oil producers, behind the U.S. and Saudi Arabia, and crude oil prices usually rise when there are conflicts involving a major producer because of the impact on production.”

AAA noted crude oil prices were volatile after Hamas attacked Israel in October, and even though Israel and the Palestinian territory are not oil producers, there are concerns that the conflict could spread to the Middle East and impact oil production.

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