The Canadian average gasoline price has risen above $1.16 per litre ahead of the Labour Day long weekend.
Major gasoline refineries in the USA were shut down by Harvey, which also caused the temporary shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline - what McTeague calls the "aortic artery" of gasoline transportation for the US Atlantic Coast.
MONTREAL | up to $ 1.35 per litre for regular, the price of gas has suffered another dramatic increase in ridership in Montreal on Friday, with an average of 12 cents of the increase.
Gas prices are expected to jump 14 cents in Southern Ontario over the next 24 hours, as flooding from Harvey continues to shake the North American oil market after the storm shut down refineries in Texas and disrupted pipelines across the United States.
"Until we get engineers into the refineries to assess the damage it's all speculation", he said. That's likely to keep prices high and lead to another spike several months from now as working refineries eventually have to go into maintenance, he said.
USA benchmark oil prices that fell below US$46 per barrel on Wednesday due to less demand from refineries have recovered to more than US$47 per barrel.
He and Roger McKnight, chief petroleum analyst for EnPro International, agree that prices on the Prairies will be relatively stable over the weekend after rising by five to 10 cents to about $1.10 per litre in the past few days. That translates to about 75 cents USA per gallon, he said, adding typical U.S. increases in affected states have been only about 20 cents per gallon. "We're just not in a position where we can sell spare capacity".
"I think about three weeks is a good estimate, until then I don't see the prices dropping", he said.