The average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline rose sharply in Kansas last week.

According to AAA Kansas, the average price rose 5 cents a gallon — the seventh largest increase in America — to $2.10 a gallon.

"Gas prices are still at some of the cheapest prices we’ve seen this year, but consumers should take advantage of them while they can," AAA Kansas spokesman Steve Steward said. "This week, drivers in 31 states, including Kansas, are paying more than last week for a gallon of gas. And AAA expects to see slight price increases throughout July."

Despite the rise in average gas prices in Kansas, there are still bargains to be had. Motorists in 40 Kansas communities are enjoying average prices of $2 per gallon or less. Last week, 94 communities registered $2 or less prices. Kansas’ average gas price is 12th lowest in the nation.

According to AAA Kansas, all states in the Great Lakes and Central states saw gasoline prices increase on the week, on average by 6 cents. Indiana and Ohio jumped 15 cents, Michigan increased by 13 cents and Kentucky rose by 11 cents. As gas prices increased, stockpiles fell in the region, indicating an increase in regional demand.

"With July 4 now in the rear-view mirror, gasoline prices in many states have advanced following the an uptick in oil prices in late June," said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for GasBuddy.com. "While gas prices may rise slightly in some states in the week ahead, it will be a very mixed bag across the country as the recent rally in crude oil prices appears to have stalled for now. Call it the summer blues at the pump — prices may fluctuate mildly in the weeks ahead, but we'll be bouncing near the summer low price for some time — don't expect much improvement in prices from for the rest of the summer.

"In fact to counter that, if we see the Atlantic become more active hurricane wise, we could see more price support in both oil and gasoline prices, so keep that in mind."

Prices in Dodge City ranged from $2.02 a gallon at Murphy USA, Dillons and Kwik Shops to $2.09 at Love’s and Flying J.

 

To contact this writer email rbluhm@dodgeglobe.com.