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'Major Pain At The Pump,' Massachusetts Gas Prices Hit $4.16 A Gallon, New State Record According To AAA

BOSTON (CBS) - The average price for a gallon of gasoline in Massachusetts has set a new record, according to AAA.

It's now $4.16 a gallon, the highest recorded average price in the state's history, the agency reported Monday.

A week ago it was just $3.62 a gallon. That's a 54 cent a gallon increase in just seven days.

"We're almost $1.50 higher than we were at this time last year. So the numbers don't lie, we're talking major pain at the pump," AAA Northeast spokesperson Mary Maguire told WBZ-TV.

Check: Massachusetts Gas Prices

The highest gas prices in the state are on the Cape and the Islands. It's $4.96 a gallon on Nantucket.

The national average now stands at $4.06 a gallon. California has the highest average in the nation at $5.34 a gallon.

Prices have been rising rapidly since Russia invaded Ukraine last month. Russia is one of the top three oil producers in the world.

"Whenever you have geopolitical tensions surrounding a major oil and gas producer like Russia you send shockwaves through the entire oil and gasoline market and that's what we're seeing now," Maguire told WBZ.

She added there's also an increased demand for gas in the U.S. because the weather is getting better and people are traveling more. That will likely continue with April school vacation coming and then the summer travel season.

"The prediction is that air fares will rise due to the fact that diesel fuel will be more expensive and so I think we will see people being very discriminating about where they travel, where they drive, where they fly, because it's simply going to be more expensive," Maguire said.

AAA has several steps to help you save money at the pump - buy regular gas, slow down to be more fuel efficient, properly inflate your tires and drive less if possible. AAA also has an app to help you find the best prices in your area.

"We are going to see people driving less. We're going to see people using public transit more most likely. We're going to see the behavior changes we saw in 2008 which is the last time that gasoline hit $4 plus per gallon," Maguire said.

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