A dramatic jump at the pump is causing a major impact on consumers. Kerry Dehmel owns Rapid Print in Clovis. He says his business takes a hard hit every time gas prices spike.
“I lose profit out of my business for gas. But I think the people that get regular paychecks with fixed incomes its coming right out of their food budgets,” said Dehmel.
That's exactly the situation for Joseph Suarez. He's currently unemployed and recycles cans and bottles to get extra money for gas. He explained, “Me and my son were getting breakfast at the store and putting $3 in the car to get home. I get my unemployment tonight at midnight so I don't want to put too much money in the car without eating first.”
According to the Lundberg Survey, the nation saw the biggest two-week gas price hike this year. And the valley is no exception. In Fresno, gas prices jumped 23 cents per gallon in the past week averaging $3.98 for regular unleaded, Sunday. This compares with the national average that has increased about five cents per gallon to $3.67. Gasoline at some stations has jumped to $4.19 a gallon. Experts say the reason for the rise in prices is refinery problems here in California and in the Midwest. It's costing Clemmie Walker $20 a day just to drive around his neighborhood. He said, “That's about a hundred dollars just to drive around the block so I cannot stand these gas prices.”
Gas prices in Fresno Sunday were 35 cents per gallon higher than the same day, last year. Experts say it may get worse before Labor Day.