TAMPA, Fla. - Although the Energy Information Administration forecasted 2013 gas prices would not surpass those of 2012, motorists are paying more for a gallon of gas than they ever have for the month of February, according AAA South. February's current national monthly average is $3.63, 8 cents more than last year's monthly average of $3.55.
At this time, four states have an average price for a gallon of regular gas that is more than $4 and a couple others are only a few cents shy of reaching the $4 mark. Gas prices are expected to increase throughout the end of the month and continue the trend in March. This could cause some states averages in the Southeast to reach $4 a gallon, although some metro markets in the region have already reported prices well above $4.
"Unfortunately, it doesn't look like there will be much relief at the pump in the next couple of weeks," said Jessica Brady, spokeswoman, AAA-The Auto Club Group. "U.S. refinery maintenance typically peaks in March, meaning we could see more cuts in refinery output, leading to higher gas prices.
"Although gas prices were forecast to peak in April, it's unclear whether or not this will be the case since pump prices have already seen such dramatic increases."
A barrel of oil closed Friday at $93.13 on the New York Mercantile Exchange $2.73 less than the week prior.
The national average price of regular unleaded gasoline is $3.78, 7 cents more than last week. Florida s average of $3.87 increased 9 cents from last week, and Georgia s average of $3.77 rose 13 cents. Tennessee s average of $3.63 increased 10 cent from last week, respectively.