With Russia’s invasion of Ukraine inflating crude oil prices, the average cost of a gallon of regular-grade gasoline rose by 39 cents in Fresno this past week to $5.56, according to AAA.
Meanwhile, the national average shot up to a record $4.43, industry analyst Trilby Lundberg said. That’s a 22% national increase over the past two weeks and $1.54 a gallon higher than a year ago.
The previous U.S. high of $4.11 was set in July 2008.
Prices were escalating before Russia invaded Ukraine because of post-lockdown demand. In addition, crude oil prices had dropped in early 2020 as economies around the world shut down because of COVID-19.
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Mono Winds Casino in the foothills town of Auberry leads the way at $4.78 a gallon. The Fastrip in Sanger on Academy Avenue has gas at $4.95 a gallon. Several outlets, including the Walmart on East Kings Canyon Road in Fresno, are at $4.99 a gallon.
The highest gas prices in the nation are in San Francisco with the average at $5.79 a gallon for regular. The lowest average is in Tulsa, Oklahoma, at $3.80 per gallon.
The average price of diesel has also spiked, rising by $1.18 over two weeks, to $5.20 a gallon, according to the Lundberg Survey. Diesel costs $2.11 more than a year ago.
In Fresno, diesel averages $6.20 a gallon. A month ago, the price for diesel in Fresno averaged $4.87, according to AAA. A year ago, it was $3.86.
$5 a Gallon Is Tipping Point for Californians
New survey data from AAA indicates that with the national average above $4, Americans may have reached a tipping point.
Fifty-nine percent of respondents said they would make changes to their driving habits or lifestyle if the cost of gas rose to $4 per gallon. And, if gas reaches $5.00, which it has in western states, three-quarters said they would adjust their lifestyles.
There could be good news on the horizon. On Monday, a barrel of U.S. crude fell more than 8% toward $100 after touching $130 last week. Brent crude, the international standard, fell 6.7% to $105.09.
(Associated Press contributed to this report.)