Average South Sound gas prices are once again uncomfortably close to $4 a gallon.
TacomaGasPrices.com this afternoon reported the average price of a gallon of unleaded regular is $3.982 in the Tacoma area, up nearly a dime in the last week and some 36 cents higher than a month ago.
Gas prices haven’t been this high since mid-June. Then they were falling after cresting on the Memorial Day weekend at $4.31 a gallon.
Why are prices rising again? Analysts say a fire in a California Bay Area Chevron refinery and escalating world oil prices are at least partially to blame.
Gas can still be bought for as little as $3.77 a gallon at an Arco station at Portland Avenue and 104th Street South.
As summer winds down, gas prices should begin to fall again, if this year follows the typical pattern, or maybe not, considering the emotional volatility of prices that seemingly rise and fall at the slightest upset in the system.