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$5 gas sends California drivers to hybrids, bikes, Vegas

PricesPetroleum IndustryColumbus Day

The inexorable surge of gas prices is adding a brand new layer to California road rage.

Already irascible drivers are swearing off their cars, dusting off their bicycles, forgoing meals and extending trips to Las Vegas, where gasoline is far cheaper.

On social media, they’re cursing at the increases – which in parts of Southern California have resulted in prices well over $5 a gallon – as “ridiculous,” “insane,” “out of control” and a variety of other colorful terms.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) is urging a federal probe of the price increases, pointing to her suspicions of “malicious trading schemes.”

Analysts point out that the rate of the hikes is slowing, predicting that the climb could end as soon as today. But it’s a small comfort to the motorists who took to Twitter to complain about their wallet-emptying tanks.

California now has the priciest gas in the country, higher even than Hawaii, where the average is $4.406 a gallon.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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