SAN DIEGO - There is sticker shock at the gas pumps in San Diego.
Shawna Sanders looked at the price per gallon and declared, "I'm speechless, actually. I really am. I think everybody thinks the same thing I do: it's ridiculous!"
Filling her tank is costing several dollars more than it would have just a few days ago.
Charles Langley publishes a blog called fueltracker.com.
"Demand and supply … basically they supply less fuel and demand more money for it," he said.
Langley has been tracking gas prices for a decade and a half. Even he is surprised at the speed of the spike.
"We have seen gas prices go up 12 cents since last Thursday and almost 20 cents since (last) Monday," he said.
Langley said part of the reason is that two refineries have gone down in California recently.
"We saw an Exxon refinery go down in Southern California and a Tesoro refinery go down in Northern California," he said. "Together, those two refineries manufacture 16 percent of the state's supply of gasoline."
Langley also thinks the market is being manipulated.
"They'll literally export fuel at a loss overseas to drive up the price on the west coast, which is very profitable," he said.
For consumers, there is a sense of helplessness.
Vernell Jones told 10News, "It angers me … Can't do nothing about, though, can we?"
The only option seems to be to cut back somehow.
Mike Belchamber said he is watching his wallet.
"I don't fill up. Put in $20 here and $20 there," he said.
Shone' Reed is not happy either.
"I'm going to have to catch the bus because I don't have enough money to keep filling my tank every week," Reed said.
Shawna Sanders added, "What does this tell us for our summer? Less vacation."
"None of it makes sense other than ... I believe we're getting gouged," said Langley.