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Record gas prices drive the average cost per gallon over $5 in Seattle for first time ever

The price of gas has skyrocketed across the state amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine and continued effects of inflation.

SEATTLE — The average price for a gallon of regular gas in the Seattle-Bellevue-Everett area hit $5 for the first time ever on Wednesday, according to AAA.

The average as of Wednesday morning was $5.014, up nearly three cents from Tuesday. That’s up more than $1.30 compared to a year ago when the average gallon cost $3.661.

Diesel also hit an all-time high in the Seattle area Wednesday with the average gallon going for $5.83.

AAA’s data shows that Washington state’s overall average gas price hit an all-time high on Wednesday at $4.894 per gallon as many areas recorded their highest ever average gas prices.

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That’s more than 20 cents higher than the state’s average a month ago.

In Washington state on Wednesday, the highest average price of gas could be found in San Juan County, with an average of $4.462 per gallon. The cheapest average gallon of gas in the state is nearly about a dollar less at $4.466, which can be found clear across the state in Asotin County.

Gas prices continue going up in western Washington and across the country as the cost of oil remains high at around $100 per barrel as of Tuesday.

There are a few key reasons experts cite for the continued rise in the price of gas in the U.S., including Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine and rising inflation.

President Joe Biden addressed inflation on Tuesday in a speech, during which he called inflation his top domestic priority.

Andrew Gross with AAA told the Associated Press, “There are very few things that a president can do to help lower the cost of oil, and this administration tried to do pretty much everything that it can.”

On Wednesday, the U.S. Labor Department released a report showing that inflation did slow in April following seven months of giant increases that pressured consumers with prices jumping 8.3% over just one year.

However, the report also shows that cost increases in core items led by things like airline tickets, hotel rooms and new cars may hint that inflation may be more deeply rooted than expected.

Meanwhile, relief at the pump may not come for some time. Biden released oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in November and March hoping to drive prices down, but the effects were temporary.

Plus, the European Union is currently considering placing an embargo on oil from Russia to further punish the country for invading Ukraine, which could drive prices even higher.

Check gas prices in Seattle and Tacoma here.

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