CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The heatwave that has gripped the Coastal Bend over the past week is taking a toll on more than thermometers, as gas prices continue to rise.
AAA spokesperson Joshua Zuber said that the cost of gas is increasing throughout the state of Texas.
"The gas prices have been on the rise throughout the Lone Star state over the last few weeks and in the Corpus Christi Area," he said.
Analysts are attributing the sharp increase in gas prices to the extreme temperatures, which they said are straining energy resources.
"Retailers ultimately set the price that we pay at the pump. But, one of the factors that have been reported by those in the energy industry is that the refinery's may be impacted by all of this heat,” Zuber said.
Factors such as increased electricity demand, strain on natural gas reserves, and potential supply chain disruptions due to extreme weather events are all contributing to the spike in gas prices.
"When looking at the latest energy information administration data when it comes to utilization of refineries in the Gulf Coast, you know, a few weeks ago we were at 90 percent and as of the latest reading at the end of July, we're at 95 percent," he said. "So, hopefully that will bring some relief to the pain at the pump."
According to AAA’s website, in Texas, the average amount people are paying for gas is $3.45, which is about three cents cheaper than last week.
Zuber said when people are getting gas, it should not cause your wallet to feel the burn, but there are ways to save money.
"There are some ways to save on your fuel economy,” he said. “The easiest way to do that is to practice the safe driving habits — following within posted speeding limits. Also, really important in maintaining your vehicle's fuel economy, is proper maintenance.”
Experts said gas prices typically are higher in the summer compared to the rest of the year.