Minnesota drivers are paying the highest gas prices in the 48 contiguous states, with the average price statewide running at $4.27 per gallon, according to AAA’s daily survey of gas prices.
Average prices are even higher in the Twin Cities metro area at $4.31 for a gallon of unleaded gas, the report said.
Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst with GasBuddy.com, said today’s gasoline prices are a record for Minnesota. The previous high was $3.97 per gallon for regular on July 16, 2008, he said.
Unlike that spike, which was driven by crude oil prices that rose to $145 per barrel, the current situation results from refinery outages in several Midwestern states.
Some of the refining problems should correct themselves in early June, but drivers in Minnesota and North Dakota can expect $4-plus gasoline at least through the Memorial Day weekend, he added.
Drivers in Hawaii were paying the highest, at $4.35 per gallon, while those in Tennessee were paying the lowest, at $3.26.
The national average is $3.63.
In Duluth, the average price Monday morning was $4.32, while in Rochester it was $4.12. St. Cloud stations were reporting $4.24, the report said.
The high prices are blamed on refinery problems in the Midwest.
A week ago, the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gas in the metro area was $3.83. A month ago, metro area motorists were paying $3.42. A year ago they were paying $3.60 per gallon.
Staff Writer David Shaffer contributed to this article.