Gasoline prices at record high

The price of gas in the Charlotte area shot up to a record $4.18 a gallon overnight – a one-day 14 cent surge, according to AAA Carolinas.

The average price Sunday was $4.04. It was $2.75 a year ago.

The sudden increase was fueled by shortages caused by Hurricane Ike's Gulf Coast devastation early Saturday morning.

Motorists, however, anticipated Ike's devastation and sparked a run on gas early Friday morning. Many stations ran out of fuel early, and prices shot up more than 50 cents at some stations within a few hours.

Drivers have complained about possible price gouging, and N.C. Attorney General Roy Cooper has said he plans to issue subpoenas to investigate. Many stations were still without gas today.

The AAA Charlotte average doesn't include S.C. counties. The average price per gallon in the Greenville-Spartanburg, S.C., area was more than $4.10 a gallon today. It was $4 yesterday.

Related stories from Charlotte Observer