Florida gas prices up 18 cents after Hurricane Beryl

Just over one month into hurricane season, the Gulf Coast is already seeing brutal impacts after Beryl wreaked havoc on southern Texas and pushed inland.

The storm hit 80 miles south of Houston as a Category 1 hurricane, with nearly 3 million now without power and hundreds in shelters.

Although Floridians have fortunately remained safe, the effects of the storm have already reached pocketbooks with a surge in gas prices in Tampa Bay.

"I think concerns about Hurricane Beryl have been baked into prices that we've already seen at the pump, with an 18 cent increase last week," said Mark Jenkins, AAA spokesperson.

Luckily, AAA says this spike in prices at the pump shouldn’t last long.

"We're in a holding pattern, just waiting for the storm to completely pass and be able to assess any kind of damages. The good news is that the shipping channels have reopened. There doesn't seem to be, at least not so far, any major reports of significant refinery issues," said Jenkins.

READ: Jamaican restaurant in Tampa giving back after Hurricane Beryl slams island

As of 2022, Texas accounted for 42% of U.S. crude oil production, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, shipping fuel all over the country, so hurricanes can have a major impact.

"Back in 2017, Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas and led to some pretty massive flooding and impacted refineries there. As a result, we saw the state average gas price jump about 50 cents per gallon. So it can certainly have a really big impact on the prices that we pay at the pump, but it really depends on any kind of lingering issues."

AAA says based on initial reports, the storm is considered an inconvenience to fuel providers, not a major issue for production, but the next 24 to 48 hours will help paint a picture if there is damage to any refineries that would lead to sustained higher prices here in Florida.

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