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$5 Gas Returns To Southland

LOS ANGELES ( — Gas prices in Southern California rose again on Monday, leaving some drivers paying over $5.00 per gallon.

CBS2's Amber Lee reports the average price of a gallon of gas in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area climbed for the 25th consecutive day to $4.29 - over 50 cents higher than last month, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California.

One gas station in downtown Los Angeles was offering regular unleaded at $5.19 on Monday, prompting at least one potential customer to exit his vehicle, snap of a photo of the station's prices - and then drive off in search of cheaper gas.

Nationwide, the average price of gas jumped to $3.73 per gallon, while customers paid only $3.30 just one month ago.

Orange County drivers are paying an average of $4.28 at the pump, while the price of gas in the Inland Empire has climbed to $4.24 per gallon.

Drivers here in the Southland say they're already feeling pinched.

"I pay 75 bucks like three times a week to come to work," said one woman. "You have to work to eat...if you don't work, you don't eat."

While gas prices typically rise beginning in March, KNX 1070's John Brooks reports Marie Montgomery with Automobile Association of America said refinery maintenance issues have driven prices upward over the last few months.

Drivers scramble to find cheap gas

"It's always a mystery," Montgomery said. "This time of year though, it seems like now we're in the second February in a row where we're seeing a big spike in prices."

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