Gas prices in Orange County have reached a record high. The average price of self-serve regular is $4.70 a gallon, beating the previous record set in 2012, CBS Los Angeles reports

That has given way to a shocking sight: $4.99 a gallon for regular gas at a Chevron station in Costa Mesa — the most expensive price for regular gas in Orange County.

John Doidge says he was only there because he only needed a couple of gallons, and it was the closest station to home.

“It’s all about convenience. I just needed a couple of gallons for the lawnmower, get it here real quick,” he said.

For that convenience, he paid $25 for just five gallons.

The weather is still cool and blustery, but gas prices are already approaching summer highs. In Los Angeles County, the average price of self-serve regular is at $4.72 — tying a record price set in November — while Ventura County prices are right up there with Orange County. In the Inland Empire, gas prices are up to $4.65.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, gas prices increased almost 50% from December 2020 to December 2021. 

“Today, really expensive,” Ariana Garcia said. “I think with like having four kids, we’re always driving to practices, and to school… It’s just a lot of money that’s going to gas.”

Experts say there are a number of factors pushing gas prices up so early in the year. 

“We see record oil prices that are contributing to this high price, and also, the local refineries started shipping their summer-blend of gasoline this week, and that always traditionally pushes up prices,” Marie Montgomery of the Auto Club said.