Pain at the Pump: Gas Prices Creep Toward $5

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SANTA MONICA, Calif. (KTLA) — Gas prices have been soaring over the last month, and they’re showing no signs of letting up.

Los Angeles seems to be getting hit the hardest, with prices at many stations creeping over $5 per gallon.

gas-pump-picThe average price in Los Angeles County for a gallon of regular, self-serve gasoline is $4.12, the highest in California since November.

That’s an increase of 20.7 cents since last week, 45.6 cents in the last month, and 31 cents since last year.

In Orange County, the average is $4.11, which is the highest since October and the third highest number in the state.

According to AAA, the spike in gas prices is due to some western refinery problems

They’re currently operating at only 75 percent capacity — less than any other region — and there are no inexpensive alternatives.

In addition, we just switched over the the summer blend of gasoline, which is more expensive. Also, California has a more expensive blend to help with pollutants.

AAA says that inventories are expected to increase again locally, and they hope that stabilizes gas prices.

-Jennifer Gould reporting

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  • Scott

    We need to find out exactly why our prices are so high in SoCal…I was just in AZ this past weekend and paid $3.19 and $3.35..We cannot say our sales tax is higher as thiers is 9.68%. We can say it is the "gas tax", but then why are our roads so damn bad. As you go from AZ or NV to a CA road, you know you are back in CA as the road conditions are that bad. As for it being a "blend" adjustment, the gas companies know it is coming so why do they do thier "maintenence" at that time. Something to boost the profits I would think. Can someone in the news reporting business please find out why we pay so much (the highest in the country, BY FAR)?

    • SQA

      As for the roads from AZ to CA, if you're talking about the I-40, that's a federal freeway. You might guess that it depends on federal funding for repair, and those taxes haven't really moved much in the last 15 years. Yes, it sucks that our side of the border gets neglected, but CA also has a lot more (and longer) Interstate freeways than AZ, so our money sometimes gets put elsewhere. As for why we pay more, CA uses a blend of gasoline that puts out less carbon monoxide than other states. It's more expensive to refine; hence, we pay more for it. If you've ever looked out at the smog cloud above downtown L.A., you might be a little hesitant about changing that. I'm with you though: it sucks.

    • craigbhill

      There are regions in the country where oil companies are king and the prices are low, and there are regions the oil companies must hate, because no bs about refinery shipments can explain this periodic screwing.

      You will never see these kinds of prices irritating legislators in Sacratomato. Nuff said? It's all about shmoozing power, and the powerful hate LA..

  • april1233

    like Shawn responded I'm in shock that a person able to profit $5473 in a few weeks on the internet. did you read this web page jump15.comCHECK IT OUT

  • Chris

    If THEY are having refinery problem, why do they take it out on us? No other business operates like this. If you have internal operation issues, you supper profit losses until you correct your own problems.

  • redek

    before I looked at the paycheck ov $9684, I be certain that my father in law woz actualy making money part time from there pretty old laptop.. there moms best frend haz done this for under twenty one months and recently paid for the depts on there place and got a new McLaren F1. read more at,

    • Scam Buster

      Beware of scam. Хорошая попытка Дмитрия украинские мошенника. Я не влюбляться в вашей афере снова. Кроме того, мой банк не принимает фальшивых рублей. Может быть, вы должны попробовать, разместив свой дерьмо на вашем лице. До свидания.



    • wholeworldcoffee

      I also lived on Catalina and there's a reason gas on the island is so expensive. We not only have to pay for the gas but also the cartage of bringing the gas over from the mainland. Comparing Avalon gas prices to L.A. is an apples/oranges argument.

  • Greg

    There is no excuse for these gas prices other than greed!! The oil companies create there own shortages so that they can rasie the prices on the consumer. We have to come together and show the greedy oil tycoons that their day of pushing the public around is over. I say we start by having them pay more taxes on their profits….if they are going to take so much they might as well give back!!!

    • bdbdbd

      So you really think oil companies will feel the pain with a tax increase? They're much smarter than that. All they'll do is tack on the tax to the price of gas so you'll be paying even more. As long as you buy gas, they'll always win. You're only chance of even remotely affecting them is to consume less. There is no other way. Get rid of your SUV. Buy either a hybrid or motorcycle. Otherwise, you have no choice but to take the price they give you.

      • wajlmao

        Doesn't matter, the more we cut back the higher they raise their prices.

        There is no refinery shortage, it is all BS from the oil companies dished out to the public with the governments blessing.

        In December 2011, West Coast refineries exported an average of 33,000 barrels a day of motor gasoline, according to data provided by the United States Energy Information Administration, up from just 4,000 barrels a day in 2007, before the recession began.

        The region’s five oil refineries along San Pablo Bay and the Carquinez Strait were responsible for $7.8 billion in oil exports in 2010

        If there are shortages why are they exporting it?


        High gas prices, more fuel-efficient cars and fewer commuters have all contributed to California drivers using a million fewer gallons of gas than they did in 2005, according to the California State Board of Equalization, which collects the state gasoline tax.

        “A lot of Central Valley workers who lost their jobs in the Bay Area are no longer making those long commutes and therefore are not buying as much gasoline,” said Jaime Garza, a spokesman for the agency.

        “Our options were to reduce production, lay off workers, close refineries or find markets for our products,” said Tupper Hull, a vice president at the Western States Petroleum Association, an industry trade group. “We found new markets.”

        In the end it is all BS and doesn't matter what we do. If we all drive a prius they will just export more and jack up the price on what we put in our prius.

      • Greg

        No, I don't think they will feel pain with a tax increase and I agree that they will pass that off to us, however right now they are making us pay ridiculous prices for gas and all they make are record profits; well if we are going to keep paying these prices as they create thier own market then removing any tax breaks and making them pay taxes on profits will benefit us all….at least this way we get something for paying so much!! Besides unless you have a all electric car you will always be paying these scum bags! ……Then you will have to pay the power company more money….either way we are wrapped helically around an axis!!!

  • Tim

    The Chevron Station that you showed downtown is always at least a dolor higher than the rest of the city. i just wonder why people keep going there

  • Ken A

    The evil of the oil cartels and their greed have no limits. They are control of the nation's energy policy making and they have most of the ccorrupt government officals and ex-officials like Dicm Cheney in their pockets. And now the hardship of most struggling Americans is going get worse.

    But the pain has not reached the point that people would revolt. But it's getting closer now than ever. And when it finally comes, those evil oil cartels will feel the wrath of the people and the only place they can escape to is hell.

  • Oil-companies-r-evil

    It's going according to plan as far as the evil oil companies are concerned. They have been choking all development of battery technology, a key to the success of electric vehicles, to keep the continuation of oil dependency. Oil companies are like drug cartels: they want us to stay addicted to oil and keep all alternative energy sources from becoming a reality.

  • Tim

    That fat one in the red did the black woman finger wave at the start of the video. Is she black? And if she isn't she should NOT be doing that very annoying finger wave! And that mmm-mmm sound that chocolate women make.

  • SQA

    If you guys really want to stick it to big oil, try riding a bicycle around town. In tandem with the MTA, I can get anywhere from Long Beach to Pasadena to Chatsworth. I'm telling you, it's not as bad as you think (unless you need to haul something/someone). I'm not saying ditch the car, but when I'm just running an errand or two, I don't drive.

  • malclave

    Great news for the economy!

    As President Obama said during the debates, low gas prices are an indicator of economic collapse. Rising gas prices must therefore be a good sign… right?

  • malclave

    I don't think we're allowed to mention Obama in relation to this.

    If Romney had won in November, then any increase in gas prices would have been his fault, but it's racist to apply the smae standards to Obama as to a white man.

    • Guest

      malclave. I know that you probably don't/can't read . So give fucx cable news a look for a couple of hours. BTW, while you're at it . try learning how to spell. Ok?

      • malclave

        Oh, dear, I made a typographical error… which has more to do with typing, and not reading.

        Considering your complete and absolute ignorance of the rules of written English (what's with the space between "read" and the period, anyway?), I think I'll survive your criticism.

        And just what is "fucx cable news"? I don't have cable, since it's just a waste of money as far as I'm concerned.

  • Paul

    Where does this fit on the list of the usual ridiculous reasons for the increase. Why doesn't it just state that the oil companies are just greedy and gouging the consumer. Isn't it more than a coincidence that gas prices have skyrocketed since this administration has been in office taking into consideration its obsession with alternative energy.

  • Rogue1

    Usually Dianne F threatens to look into these price spikes then they go down for a while. But lately she's too busy trying to disarm America to care about our personal economies.