Ike Already Affecting U.S. Gas Prices

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Hurricane Ike is raising concern for the oil rigs along the Texas Coast.

The storm is quickly approaching the nation's largest complex of refineries and petrochemical plants, and the oil and gas industry is keeping a close watch on the situation. Officials have alreadt shut down refineries located in Galveston in preparation for the storm.

Since Thursday, wholesale gas prices have soared more than 30 percent. Prices may continue to rise depending upon any further damage caused by the storm.

The upper Texas Coast is responsible for about one-fifth of U.S. refining capacity.

Some NC Gas Stations Limiting Gas Purchases

Several gas stations in North Carolina are limiting how much fuel drivers can buy because of Hurricane Ike. They fear the massive storm will affect the supply of gasoline, so they are limiting customers to just ten gallons of gas.

Refineries in the Gulf can stand up to wind, but flooding and power outages could leave them closed for days, which could lead to a spike at the pump of 50 to 75 cents.

But experts say the worst thing people can do is panic and force a rush on gas stations. They say this will definitely cause a gas shortage.

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