Gasoline plunges in Dayton region as holiday week starts

The Miami Valley is enjoying some of the lowest gasoline prices in the state heading into the holiday week, so it’s a good idea to fill up now before prices rebound.

Prices are set to rise because this is the prime season for road trips and demand probably will increase, said Cindy Antrican, AAA public affairs manager, on Friday. It’s the common annual pattern.

But for the moment, with a national average price per gallon of $3.51, and an average of $3.45 just down the road in Cincinnati, Dayton-Springfield drivers Friday were filling up for an average of $3.275, a big price break that surprised Antrican.

For 2013, Ohio has been running above the national average, and now the state is below that. In the past week, Ohio had the third largest weekly decrease in gas prices, just behind Michigan and Indiana, Antrican said.

“That is quite a turnaround from where we were,” she said. “These declines have been headlined by massive drops in the Midwest for gasoline.”

Avery Ash, AAA’s regulatory affairs manager, credited finishing up of maintenance work at the ExxonMobil refinery in Joliet, Ill., and the BP refinery in Whiting, Ind. “Just weeks after prices in the region soared to new or near record-highs on regional supply and production issues, prices have just as dramatically reversed course, as refinery issues have been resolved and retail prices have come plummeting back to earth,” he said.

AAA projected Friday that 40.8 million will travel during the holiday week from Wednesday through Sunday, 84 percent traveling by automobile.

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