STATEWIDE–Since Ida has been causing numerous disruptions to oil production, gas prices are expected to go up throughout the country this week.
“I expect the national average to rise in the neighborhood of 5-15 cents per gallon in the next couple of weeks- far smaller than the impact from Hurricanes Katrina and Harvey, but with damage assessments still to come, it’s possible we see a slight deviation from that,” said Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy.
DeHaan says it wasn’t only because of Ida. Wholesale prices were also up on Friday before the hurricane, so he says a price increase was likely coming this week anyway.
If you’re getting close to empty on your tank, DeHaan says it is best to fill up as quickly as possible.
“If you see a station that is $2.80 or $2.85 per gallon, it’s probably not a bad idea to fill up because the average at $2.93 in Indianapolis will probably go over $3 per gallon at some point this week,” said DeHaan.
Prices are similar in the rest of Indiana. In northern Indiana, where prices are typically higher than the rest of the state, DeHaan says that is about to change.
“Average prices in Hammond and northwest Indiana are about $3.13 per gallon. In two weeks, though, that is when the state switches back to winter gasoline, which means it will be cheaper,” said DeHaan.
DeHaan believes the big thing to keep an eye on now is the flooding down south.
“Flooding could alter the rise in gas prices, but the odds of a massive surge in gas prices nationwide are extremely low,” said DeHaan.
He also urged people not to “panic buy” gasoline during this difficult time.
LISTEN: Full Interview with Patrick DeHaan