Gas prices in Washington and Oregon could rise as much as 35 cents per gallon by the end of the weekend due to tight supplies that are boosting prices, an industry analyst said Wednesday. That could push the average price for unleaded to $4.59 in Washington and $4.56 in Oregon by Sunday.
"I expect stations to increase prices as much as 10-35 cents per gallon by the conclusion of the weekend with some stations starting to raise prices immediately," said Patrick DeHaan, GasBuddy.com Senior Petroleum Analyst.
Gasbuddy says wholesale gasoline prices, the price stations pay before taxes and freight charges, is at its highest level ever recorded for the Pacific Northwest.
DeHaan said the spike will be temporary, but it will take a lot longer for the prices to go down.
"I expect the situation to slowly resolve itself over the next few weeks, but as gasoline prices tend to fall slowly, motorists may not have a sense of real relief until late-June or July," DeHaan said.
Assuming the increase reaches the high-end of DeHaan’s prediction, drivers would be paying an average of $4.63 in Seattle, $4.59 in Tacoma and $4.73 in Bellingham by Sunday, based on numbers provided by AAA Wednesday. Portland drivers would pay $4.55 and Medford would pay $4.63.
Compare that to the current national average of $3.68 a gallon.
The news comes the same day benchmark crude lost $1.95 to $89.90 in New York trading. Oil has plunged 15 percent in May as investors predict that the European economy will continue to slow.
GasBuddy operates SeattleGasPrices.com and over 250 similar websites that track gasoline prices at over 140,000 gasoline stations in the United States and Canada.
AAA, a trusted source for gas price information, is warning they are not getting the same information Gasbuddy.com is reporting. In fact, they expect prices to stay steady or even drop slightly over the weekend.
Information compiled by KING 5’s Travis Pittman