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Martha Meade
Public Relations Manager, VA

C: (804) 543-7190

Morgan Dean
Senior Specialist, Public and Government Affairs, VA
C: (804) 921-6198

Richmond, Virginia (Monday, May 17, 2021) - Virginia's gas price average ($2.94) is up 18 cents from a week ago in the wake of the Colonial Pipeline shutdown. Last week, gas stations across the state ran low or out of fuel drivers lined up to fill up when the pipeline was shutdown for several days after the cybersecurity hack. States like Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina, where the gasoline supply was also strained due to the pipeline shutdown, saw prices jump as much as 21 cents in matter of days. With the pipeline back in operation and supply being restored, gas prices in these states and the national average have stabilized since the end of last week. 

“The Southeast will continue to experience tight supply this week as terminals and gas stations are refueled,” said Morgan Dean, AAA spokesperson. “Over the weekend, gas prices started to stabilize, but are expected to fluctuate in the lead up to Memorial Day weekend.”

The national gas price average is the most expensive in six years at $3.04. Gas prices were expected to flirt with $3/gallon leading up to Memorial Day weekend, but last week’s shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline caused prices to spike weeks ahead of the holiday. On the week, the national average jumped eight cents. 

AAA forecasts 34 million Americans to take a road trip 50 miles or more from home from May 27 to May 31 to celebrate the unofficial kickoff to summer. That is a 52% increase compared to last summer, but nearly 9% below pre-pandemic levels in 2019. Regardless, drivers will be met with the most expensive gas prices since 2014.

“This is going to be an expensive summer for drivers. However, we do not expect it to deter travelers from hitting the road. AAA finds that despite the higher pump prices, Americans still take their road trips but just may not travel as far as originally planned, or go to their planned destination and spend a little less,” added Dean.



Average price per gallon of self-serve, regular gasoline. 
Gas prices provided by AAA,





Weekly Change


Last Month

Last Year



Up 8 cents





Up 18 cents





Up 17 cents





Up 19 cents





Up 7 cents



Norfolk Area


Up 15 cents





Up 20 cents





Up 16 cents




Quick Stats


The nation’s top 10 largest weekly increases: Georgia (+21 cents), North Carolina (+21 cents), South Carolina (+21 cents), Virginia (+18 cents), Tennessee (+18 cents), Alabama (+17 cents), Maryland (+16 cents), Mississippi (+12 cents), West Virginia (+10 cents) and Texas (+10 cents). 

The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets: Mississippi ($2.72), Louisiana ($2.72), Texas ($2.76), Missouri ($2.76), Arkansas ($2.76), Oklahoma ($2.78), North Dakota ($2.83), Minnesota ($2.83), Kansas ($2.84) and Alabama ($2.85). 

Oil Market Dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session, WTI increased by $1.55 to settle at $65.37. Market optimism that crude demand will recover, despite an uptick in coronavirus infection rates in some countries, helped to lift prices last week. Prices could continue to climb this week if the market remains optimistic as vaccines continue to roll out. Additionally, prices increased after the Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) latest weekly report revealed that total domestic crude oil inventory decreased by 400,000 bbl to 484.7 million bbl. If EIA’s next report shows another decrease in total domestic crude supply, crude prices could increase further. 

AAA has a variety of resources to help motorists save on fuel:

AAA is ‘pumping’ up its ‘Don’t Drive Intoxticated, Don't Drive 'Intexticated’ distracted driving campaign by targeting motorists where they are most likely to see it – at gas stations.  The Don’t Drive Intoxicated, Don’t Drive Intexticated messaging can be seen at select gas stations in Richmond, Virginia right on the pump handle and/or sitting atop the pumps themselves.  Everyone is encouraged to take the pledge to drive distraction free via this link and share their pledge on social media tagging @AAAVANews on Twitter or AAA Mid-Atlantic News on Facebook.

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