The air went out of the tires, so to speak, for summer's last splash this holiday weekend when gas prices across the region climbed to over $4 a gallon.
At a time when families were hoping to enjoy one last weekend outing before school begins next week, many found themselves questioning their plans after this week's gas spikes.
According to the petroleum analysts at GasBuddy.com., "the average motorist will be laboring a bit more to pay for gas this Labor Day holiday."
The normal trend, according to them, is to begin seeing a downward trend in gas prices this time of year. Instead, motorists will be experiencing the highest fuel prices of the year right now.
The national average for a gallon of gas today is $3.80, although eight states (including Michigan) had an average of $4 a gallon or better. AAA reported the state average is $4.06 today, 30 cents more than this time last year.
If you're traveling to the Chicago area this weekend, expect to pay about $4.35 a gallon.
Over the past 11 Labor Day weekends, gas prices declined 10 of those years.
Hurricane Isaac is being blamed for this week's gas increases as it forced the closure of Gulf Coast refineries. Once the storm made land, it quickly downgraded to a tropical storm. The hope is the refineries, no longer facing the extent of damage they could have faced, will be able to resume operations sooner than originally anticipated. Once that occurs, gas prices should begin to drop again.