BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Experts have been warning of record-high gas prices by the summer, but a sharp increase could be just a few days away.
GasBuddy.com on Wednesday issued an alert in Buffalo and other cities, warning of a spike in prices. In Buffalo, the analyst said, "I expect stations to increase prices as much as 5-20 cents per gallon by the conclusion of the weekend with some stations starting to raise prices immediately."
A $0.20 increase by the weekend would put the local average above the $4 mark for the first time in a long time.
Current WNY Average (AAA) - $3.85
GasBuddy pointed to increases already taking place in California and beginning to happen in places like Michigan, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. There, some stations are expected to raise prices by up to $0.45 per gallon.
Experts say rising tensions in the Middle East and global demand pressures are to blame for the overall increase. This latest spike is a combination of those factors and a short-term situation out West -- a fire shut down production at a large refinery in Washington State.
Many wonder if this forecast of a $0.20 increase over just a few days is just fear mongering.
GasBuddy appears to have developed a solid reputation in recent years; last year, it released a summer fuel forecast in January and was within pennies of being spot on.