Gas Prices Tick Downward for the First Time Since Harvey
The statewide gas price average in Texas is $2.52for a gallon of regular unleaded fuel, according to the AAA Texas Weekend Gas Watch. That price is the same as yesterday and is two cents less per gallon compared to this day last week.
Of the major metropolitan areas surveyed in Texas, drivers in Dallas are paying the most on average per gallon at $2.61, while drivers in Amarillo are paying the least at $2.36 per gallon. The national average price for a gallon of regular unleaded is $2.65, which is one cent less than yesterday and two cents less than the price per gallon at this same time last week.
For the first time in more than 15 days, the national gas price average appears to be leveling out despite Hurricane/Tropical Storm Irma making landfall just days ago in the southeast. Reports indicate that Irma left millions of people without power, while water and debris cover roadways.
“Irma was one of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes in history,” said AAA Texas Spokesperson Daniel Armbruster. “Our thoughts are with all those impacted. The safety of our response teams and members is our number one priority. As with Hurricane Harvey, AAA regional teams are on standby to assist members in affected areas as soon as conditions allow.”
At the end of last week, some Florida and other Southeast states saw consumers flock to gas stations to fill-up on fuel, causing some stations to have gas outages ahead of the storm. Once power is restored and roads cleared, gasoline will be able to be delivered to stations in the impacted region, similar to what the Texas experienced post-Harvey.
“There is not a gasoline shortage in the U.S., but instead localized challenges -- power outages, impassable roads, debris -- in Florida keeping gasoline supplies from where they are needed most,” continued Armbruster. “Total U.S. gasoline stocks sit above the five-year average. Since much of Florida’s gasoline delivery occurs via barge, all eyes will remain on port conditions as the storm passes.”
While damage assessments continue to come in from Irma in the southeast, those living along the Texas Gulf Coast are moving forward with recovery efforts. According to the Department of Energy, at least five refineries in the Gulf Coast are operating at reduced rates, which accounts for eight percent of U.S. refining capacity. Six refineries are in the process of restarting, accounting for 12 percent of U.S. refining capacity. Five refineries remain shutdown, accounting for six percent of U.S. refining capacity. The restarting process can take several days or weeks, depending on damage. The Colonial Pipeline continues to experience a delivery delay of up to a week to Mid-Atlantic states.