Impact of Hurricane Harvey on gas prices

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BISMARCK, N.D. - In 2005, gas prices spiked in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, anywhere from 50 cents to a $1 per gallon in some parts of the country. As the Gulf Coast is still grappling with Harvey, many expected prices to rise, as well.

A lot has changed in the decade plus since Hurricane Katrina ravaged much of the gulf, including our domestic energy production.

Historically we've seen spikes at the pump following hurricanes in the Gulf region. Following Harvey however, it may not be as harmful on your wallet.

"The prices that we're experiencing here aren't any different than what we were experiencing at the beginning of August, so price bumps here, not likely," said Eugene Graner, Heartland Investors.

That's not to say the damage from Harvey isn't significant. The sheer amount of water in the Houston area is historic.

"Fifty inches of rain, that would take us multiple years to attain that in Bismarck-Mandan, whereas in the Houston Metro area, they're getting it in three or four days," said Chauncy Schultz, meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

The flooding has shut down many of the refineries in the area. The difference this time around is that most haven't sustained serious damage.

"We have more available gas stocks, diesel stocks and oil stocks on hand then before Katrina. And with this current crisis that occurred we're not seeing extreme damage to refineries.They're shut down but they can be fired up again probably in a week or two," said Graner.

But the water levels in Houston haven't been seen before.

"Houston has received more rainfall with this system then it they have in any month ever in their historical records," said Schultz.

Recovery will be slow and difficult, you just won't see it when you're filling up.

Gas futures are trading up five cents today, and while experts differ on whether or not that will translate to the pump, prices remained steady at two-thirty four a gallon in Bismarck.