I've noticed that there a couple different types of people when it comes to filling up the car with gas. You've got the folks who pull into the nearest gas station, shove their credit card into the pump, fill up their tank, and move on.

Then, you've got the group that will drive all over town looking for the absolute lowest price on a gallon of gas they can find, and they won't stop looking until they find a place that has the magic number--or they run out of gas while still looking.

If you're in the first group, move along, there's nothing to see here. Second group--not so fast.

You second-groupers already know that gas prices have been on the rise in a big way, but maybe you didn't know that the rising prices are probably going to be with us a while, at least until the end of March, according to AAA-Chicago.

ThePatch.com breaks it down for us:

Average gas prices, on the week and the month, have increased in all 50 states and the District of Columbia as of Monday. The national average, at $2.72 per gallon, is a 30-cent increase from a month ago and 28 cents more than this time last year, according to a AAA report. It's the most expensive daily average since August 2019.

As for Illinois' prices, AAA-Chicago has us at $2.89 per gallon, midgrade gas is at a $3.21 average, and premium gas is hovering around $3.60.

Why are we looking at a very pricey March when it comes to gas prices? The Energy Information Administration says that it's because of the February storms that ripped through the southern states. They point out the 26 refineries that were knocked off-line caused refinery output in the U.S. to drop from 83 percent to 68 percent.

Bottom line: Until they get those refineries back up and running at or near capacity, we're going to be paying more at the pump.


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