Gas prices could hurt the auto industry. It is banking on hybrids and other 'green' cars to buffer the blow from a further rise in gas prices.
Declines in domestic and foreign production are to blame for higher US gas prices, analysts say. Some in the industry see $5-a-gallon gas in 2012, while others say supplies will increase to halt the rise.
Now at an average price of $3 a gallon, gasoline could cost at least $3.50 a gallon by spring. Rising gas prices go hand in hand with higher oil prices, driven up by outlook for a stronger economy.
Gas prices rose 3.91 cents Thursday, and are expected to continue to rise through the holiday season.
Gas prices were unchanged from Wednesday but fell 2 cents from last week, bringing the national average to $2.81 a gallon.
Oil pipeline repairs were completed in Chicago after major leaks and oil was expected to flow Friday.
Oil spills in recent weeks, from Canadian-owned pipelines that supply Midwest refineries, are another sign of nation's aging infrastructure. Latest spill expected to raise Midwest gas prices by 30 cents a gallon for several weeks.
Road trips aren't a bad idea this summer as analysts estimate gas prices will stay fairly stable and below $3 a gallon.
AAA says gas prices across the US have fallen, as Americans head out by car to enjoy the Memorial Day weekend.