CHICAGO (CBS) – Chicago area gas prices have started settling down again, after a recent spike caused by last week’s refinery fire in Lemont.
WBBM Newsradio’s Regine Schlesinger reports there were some initial fears the Citgo refinery in Lemont could be shut down completely for six months or more, after a large fire last Wednesday night.
News reports now indicate production still could be hampered while repairs are made, but the facility is up and running again.
Energy analyst Phil Flynn, with Price Futures Group, said the interruption of production in Lemont caused just a blip in an otherwise downward trend for gas prices, and could have been worse.
“Had this happened in the summer, this would be a much worse situation, because unlike the summer, it’s a lot easier for the Chicago area to get gasoline from other refineries,” he said.
That’s because Chicago gas stations no longer have to sell the unusual – and moer expensive – “summer blend” mandated for large cities by the U.S. Environmental Porection Agency.
Assuming nothing else unexpected happens, Flynn said gas prices should continue to drop through the end of the year.