Gasoline prices are slowly sinking following Hurricanes Harvey and Irma earlier this summer, according to The Houston Chronicle.
The Chronicle on Monday reported that larger reductions in fuel costs are anticipated as the rest of the year unfolds.
The national average has dipped to $2.61 a gallon, a decline of roughly five cents since last week.
The number is up from $2.32 a gallon before Harvey made landfall late last month, striking the Texas coast and eventually parts of Louisiana.
Some Twitter users on Monday expressed disappointment in the high cost of gasoline following the pair of hurricanes.
Raise your hand if you think Harvey was the perfect excuse to permanently keep gas prices 40 cents higher than they were three weeks ago 🙋🏼— Comrade Orbit 🌹⚾️ (@MagicIsTheCause) September 18, 2017
The Chronicle reported that Harvey incapacitated nearly a quarter of America’s oil refining capacity to produce fuel.
Harvey knocked out more than a dozen major refineries along the Texas coast, but all but two of them come back online in the storm’s wake.
Houston-area prices dropped by more than three cents a gallon of regular unleaded fuel in the past week.
The average cost is now about $2.45 a gallon, down from a peak of $2.50 ten days ago after Harvey passed through.
Houston’s current averages remain much higher than the $2.10 a gallon before Harvey’s landfall, however.
“With refineries continuing to get back online and with demand cooling off from the summer months, we have more room to see the national average drop in the week ahead,” Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst at GasBuddy, said.
“In fact, this week could see some of the largest drops in gas prices in many months,” added DeHaan, whose company tracks fuel prices and refining activity.
“It still will take time to completely heal from the issues Harvey and Irma left, particularly due to the large scale disruptions of fuel logistics and production, but improvement will continue both with lower retail prices and high refinery output.”
Fuel prices are expected to keep shrinking as more refining activity restarts along the Texas Gulf Coast.
Refineries nationwide will also keep switching to cheaper winter-grade fuels in the coming months, further driving down prices at the pump.