RIVERSIDE —  The spike in gas prices you experienced at the pump is real and could get worse before it gets better.

Gasoline prices in Riverside have risen 7.3 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.76 per gallon Sunday, according to GasBuddy’s daily survey of 481 stations in Riverside. This compares with the national average that had a spike of 2.2 cents per gallon versus last week to $2.91 per gallon, according to GasBuddy.

Average gasoline prices on October 8 in Riverside have ranged widely over the past five years: $3.01 per gallon in 2017, $2.75 per gallon in 2016, $2.94 per gallon in 2015, $3.62 per gallon in 2014 and $3.80 per gallon in 2013.

Including the spike locally during the past week, prices Sunday were 75.0 cents per gallon higher than a year ago and are 21.9 cents per gallon higher than a month ago. The national average has increased 6.0 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 43.7 cents per gallon higher than a year ago.

Areas near Riverside and their current gas price climate:

  • San Bernardino — $3.75 per gallon, a spike 7.1 cents per gallon from last week’s $3.68 per gallon.
  • Orange County- $3.83 per gallon, up 5.1 cents per gallon from last week’s $3.78 per gallon.
  • Los Angeles — $3.86 per gallon, up 4.3 cents per gallon from last week’s $3.82 per gallon.

“The national average gas price has broken out of a well-established rut, climbing above $2.90 per gallon for the first time since mid-June on rising oil prices ahead of the reinstatement of sanctions against Iran and OPEC failing to pump enough oil to meet robust demand,” Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy, said in a prepared statement. “We may see prices continue to lift ahead of the mid-terms, however completely unrelated to the elections, but due to constant threats from an improving economy: higher demand and lower supply is tipping the balance of the oil market and pushing prices higher.

We may even soon see $3 per gallon nationally, which would be the first time since October 2014, if oil prices continue to spike. DeHaan added.

“I, along with motorists, will be eagerly awaiting any relief at the pump, but don’t hold your breath — it may get worse before it gets better.”

For LIVE fuel price averages, visit here.