Marilyn Buskohl
Public Affairs Director
O: (605) 310-4614
C: (605) 367-3964

Motorists Can Expect East Coast Gas Prices to Spike this Week as Hurricane Florence Approaches

September 10, 2018 - On the week, the national gas price average jumped a penny to land at $2.85. Prices remain relatively stable across the country as gasoline demand dipped slightly and gasoline inventories incrementally built according to the latest Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports.

With the switchover to winter-blend gasoline fast approaching (September 15), gas prices are expected to decline this month. The threat of Hurricane Florence — which is now a Category 2 storm and projected to hit between South Carolina and Virginia by end of this week —will likely have an impact on East Coast gas prices this week should the storm follow its projected path.


“A storm like this typically causes an increase in fuel purchases in the market and a slowdown in retail demand. Motorists can expect spikes in pump prices to be brief, but possibly dramatic,” said Marilyn Buskohl, AAA spokesperson. “AAA will continue to monitor the storm and will provide updates. Motorists can find the latest gas prices at”

Quick Stats

  • The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets are: Alabama ($2.52), Mississippi ($2.54), Arkansas ($2.57), Louisiana ($2.58), South Carolina ($2.59), Tennessee ($2.59), Virginia ($2.61), Missouri ($2.61), Texas ($2.62) and Oklahoma ($2.63).  
  • The nation’s top 10 largest monthly changes are: Michigan (-12 cents), South Dakota (-10 cents), Illinois (-10 cents), Colorado (+7 cents), North Dakota (-7 cents), Alaska (-7 cents), Nebraska (-6 cents), Florida (-6 cents), District of Colombia (-5 cents) and Tennessee (-5 cents).


Great Lakes and Central

Motorists in the Great Lakes and Central states are seeing pump prices mostly remaining steady on the week. Only three states saw any ‘significant’ spikes in gas prices: Michigan (+6 cents), Indiana (+4 cents) and Kentucky (+4 cents). South Dakota and Missouri both have the largest pump price drop – three cents – of all states in the region.

Compared to one month ago, motorists in every state in the region – except Ohio (+1 cent) – are paying less to fill up. Five Great Lakes and Central states land on the top 10 largest monthly changes list: Michigan (-12 cents), South Dakota (-10 cents), Illinois (-10 cents), North Dakota (-7 cents) and Nebraska (-6 cents). 

Gasoline inventories built slightly on the week to register at 53.1 million bbl, which is the largest inventory level recorded for this time of year since 2008. With demand expected to continue declining, and taking into account high inventory levels, motorists in the region can expect prices to steadily decline this fall.

Oil market dynamics

At the close of Friday’s formal trading session on the NYMEX, WTI dropped two cents to settle at $67.75. The drop in the price of crude oil can be attributed to several factors including increasing U.S. gasoline inventories, wariness regarding U.S. sanctions against Iran, and instability in production in Libya and Venezuela. These market dynamics are mostly keeping gas prices flat, but a factor that may negatively impact prices is the threat of Hurricane Florence in the Atlantic. While it is still too early to pinpoint exactly where it will make landfall, the National Hurricane Center reports landfall could occur somewhere between South Carolina and Virginia late this week.


Motorists can find current gas prices along their route with the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android. The app can also be used to map a route, find discounts, book a hotel and access AAA roadside assistance. Learn more at


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TEDx Wilmington Salon

Who's in the Driver's Seat? The Transformation of Transportation

On Tuesday, October 17, 2017, AAA and TEDx Wilmington held the first TEDx Salon dedicated to ideas worth spreading in transportation.

This event had:

  • 12 live talks given by 13 speakers
  • 368 people in attendance at the live event
  • More than 7,500 viewed the event online through Livestream, viewing events, and on the AAA Associate network
  • Online viewers came from all 50 states and approximately 30 countries around the world

View a slideshow from the event

This TEDx WilmingtonSalon was organized in partnership with AAA

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