EUGENE, Ore. -- Experts predict that gas prices will rise after a Saudi oil field was attacked over the weekend, saying the increase could be as much as 25 cents.
The attacks halted the production of 5.7 million barrels of oil per day, roughly 6% of the global supply of crude oil. Experts estimate that the cost of crude oil accounts for approximately 50% of the cost of gasoline. With oil costs topping off over $60 a barrel Monday, gas prices are poised to rise.
"Any time we see a jump in the price of crude, that will translate into higher gas prices for you and me," said AAA Oregon and Idaho director of public affairs Marie Dodds.
If prices rise, it could take weeks of incremental increases to reach the 25 cent mark.
In Eugene and Springfield, average gas prices are still on a downward trend. On Monday, regular gas in the area averaged $2.97 per gallon, whereas it averaged $3.19 a year ago, according to AAA.
Dodds said that the Pacific Northwest imports less international oil, potentially isolating the area from increasing costs.
"This insulation will actually do us pretty well this time. I don't think gas prices here are going to climb as quickly as they will in other parts of the country," said Dodds.
Drivers in the area expressed concern over potentially increasing prices at the pump.
"Twenty-five cents would be quite a financial hit," said Jesse Underwood, who drives between California and Washington frequently to see his grandchildren. "Gasoline is one of the things we consider when we go back and forth."
Other drivers said they didn't think that a mild cost increase would hurt their bottom lines too badly.