PORTLAND, Ore. – A busy weekend of Labor Day travel starts Friday, with many people in the Portland metro area getting a head start on getting out of town.
AAA says gas prices are on the rise heading into the weekend, due to higher crude oil prices and various refinery issues.
The national average for regular unleaded jumped four cents to $2.22 a gallon in the last week, according to AAA. The Oregon average adds two cents, to $2.46. Despite the increases, pump prices are 25 to 45 cents a gallon less than a year ago, and are on track to be the cheapest for Labor Day since 2004.
About 35 million Americans are expected to travel this year.
Police officers will have extra patrols through the weekend, watching for impaired or distracted drivers. According to Oregon State Police, in 2015 and 2016, the state has seen a dramatic rise in fatal traffic crashes.
Officers will watch for five categories that contribute to fatal or serious injury crashes: speed, occupant safety, lane usage, impaired driving and distracted driving.