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Originally published Monday, October 8, 2012 at 11:37 AM

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California gas price surge really adds up

HIGHEST PRICES

The Associated Press

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One reason for this surge are all the seasonal, speciality gases that California... MORE

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HIGHEST PRICES

California's gas prices have skyrocketed to the highest in the nation, rising 50 cents a gallon in the past week to a record average of $4.67 on Monday for unleaded regular, according to AAA's Daily Fuel Gauge Report.

LOWEST PRICES

On the other side of the country, South Carolina has the nation's lowest average at $3.49. That's $1.18 per gallon less than California.

DO THE MATH

So, what does that mean to an average motorist?

Someone in California who drives 300 miles per week and gets 20 miles per gallon spends nearly $18 more than a South Carolina motorist. Over the course of a year, that adds up to $936.

AT THE EXTREMES

The pocketbook punch is far greater when comparing the most expensive station in California with the cheapest in South Carolina.

A station in California's Big Sur was charging $5.89 per gallon on Monday while customers at a station in Aiken, S.C., were paying $3.21, according to GasBuddy.com.

That means the same motorist driving 300 miles per week and getting 20 miles to the gallon pays $40 more filling up in Big Sur. Spread over a year, that person is pumping almost $2,100 more into the tank than someone filling up at the Aiken station.

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