Cold weather could be a chill on Arkansas gas prices



(The Center Square) – Arkansas gas prices declined this week but frigid temperatures across the country could put a chill on them, according to AAA.

Arkansas averages at $2.63 for a gallon of regular unleaded fuel, making it the second lowest gas price average in the nation. The price is 3 cents less than last week and about 33 cents less than the same week last year.

But AAA warns that oil refining operations could be impacted by the extreme arctic weather expected in many areas of the U.S. this weekend. Should interruptions in regular production occur, the price of gas at the pump will be affected.

“During extreme cold like we are about to experience, refineries will often time have to temporarily shut down or will not be able to run at full capacity” said AAA spokesperson Nick Chabarria. “This could cause a temporary jump in prices as refiners work to get back online.”

The National Weather Service is anticipating “an arctic outbreak” throughout much of the country this weekend. Gasoline prices have fluctuated since December but crude oil prices have remained steady, the AAA report suggested, noting that market analysts will be scrutinizing current weather patterns for potential price impacts.

In Arkansas, Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers drivers are paying the least at $2.49, while an average of $2.75 is being paid by drivers in West Memphis – which did not see any changes to its gas price over the last week. West Memphis motorists are paying the highest prices in the state.

Only Oklahoma has less expensive gas than Arkansas, with California and Hawaii paying more than 70% higher prices than in Arkansas.

Nationally, the average price of regular unleaded gas is $3.08, 19 cents less than it was around this same time last year and one cent less than last week.

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