PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Motorists across the country are paying an average of $17 more to fill up their tanks compared to this time last year, according to AAA.
"Gas prices have risen to the highest levels in seven years. So, not since 2014 have motorists been paying this much to fill up," AAA Spokesperson Jana Tidwell said.
Several factors are to blame, but the primary reason is the skyrocketing cost of crude oil. Also, the recent decision by OPEC, and its allies, not to increase production is only making matters worse.
"Crude oil has traded above $80 a barrel for the past week," Tidwell said. "That's double what crude oil was trading for this time last year."
The average price for a gallon of regular last year at this time fell to $2.16 in the throes of the pandemic lockdown. The national average today is $3.35.
That is a full $1.19 higher over the past 12 months, and seven cents higher over the past week alone.
Action News spoke with a bunch of people who say with retail prices going up because of ballooning inflation rates, prices at the pump are serving as that one, final, economic kick to the gut.
"Before the prices went up, I used to fill up my tank with $45. Now, after the epidemic, $58," said Omayra Villafane, of Norristown.
"I own my own cleaning business. So, it affects me a lot because I travel in my car and the gas prices have skyrocketed. So, now I feel like I'm working for next to nothing," said Donna Madrak, of Plymouth Meeting.
The highest national average price for gas was recorded the week of July 17, 2008, when drivers were paying $4.17 a gallon.