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Gas prices move up quickly

For the first time in 2014, gas prices are higher than at the same time last year as prices moved up quickly and spring break travel begins for many Southland residents, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California's Weekend Gas Watch.

The state average is $4.069 a gallon for regular as of Thursday, 6.1 cents more than last week.

The average price of self-serve regular gasoline in San Diego is $4.122, which is 7.8 cents above last week, 17 cents higher than last month, and 10 cents higher than last year.

In the Los Angeles-Long Beach area, the average price is $4.151 per gallon, which is 7.4 cents more than last week, 17.5 cents higher than last month, and 11 cents higher than last year. On the Central Coast, the average price is $4.150, up 6.4 cents from last week, 17 cents higher than a month ago, and 3 cents more than last year. In the Inland Empire, the average per-gallon price is $4.101, up 7 cents from last week, 15 cents more than last month, and 8 cents more than last year.

"Wholesale prices rose sharply at the end of last week on news of longer-than-expected refinery maintenance and possible supply problems with the ethanol additive for gasoline," said Auto Club spokesman Jeffrey Spring. "Unfortunately, these price hikes are happening just as many Southern Californians are getting away for spring break. An Auto Club poll shows a 9 percent increase in spring travel over last year, so we advise motorists to use cruise control at the speed limit when safe to do so in order to save money on fuel."

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