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GasBuddy Expert Discusses Rising Gas Prices in Northeast Indiana

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – As Tuesday marked the second gas price increase in Northeast Indiana in the last week, GasBuddy officials are paying attention to the cause, and it doesn’t concern the upcoming holiday.

Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, said the two recent increases in gas prices are due to refinery problems at two oil refineries in Joliet, Illinois, and Whiting, Indiana.

“There are refinery outages happening, and that’s causing the wholesale price of gasoline to skyrocket… there wasn’t much decline between the cycles,” De Haan said.

As for the second price increase that occurred around Memorial Day, De Haan considered it purely coincidental.

Instead, he said April and May are times when a combination of factors contribute to rising gas prices, including refinery maintenance costs and the switch to summer gasoline.

Add to that the recent outages at the Joliet and Whiting refineries, and De Haan said it’s a tinderbox for rising prices.

“Typically, as we get closer to summer, refinery maintenance will be done over and over again, with the exception, like I said, of those refinery outages, which help increase supply,” De Haan said . “Refineries ramp up production once they’re done with maintenance, and that typically drives prices down in June and through July 4.”

While De Haan told WANE 15 that the possibility of more outages, the annual hurricane season and other unforeseen factors could disrupt the usual annual flow of gas prices, he also said there would be no “record” prices in the summer of 2024 .