"Filling up today:" Hurricane Harvey expected to impact gas prices here in Wisconsin

BROWN DEER -- While Hurricane Harvey may be thousands of miles south, we'll feel the effects here in Wisconsin, at the gas pump.

Across the country and in the Greater Milwaukee area, gas prices are on average about $2.3 a gallon. Economists predict starting Saturday, August 26th the cost will start to go up ten cents or even 25 cents.

With their budgets in mind, Milwaukee County drivers are getting ahead of the anticipated price surge at the pump.

"That's exactly what I'm doing. Filling up today. Let's get it done early so I won't feel that 25 cent pinch," said Connie Stone, filling up with gas.

As Hurricane Harvey nears the Texas coast, many oil rigs in the south are temporarily shutting down.

"40 percent of the refineries in the U.S. are in Texas, Louisiana, that region. Also, about 20 percent of gas production, oil production comes from that region," said Marquette Professor Abdur Chowdhury.

Marquette Professor Abdur Chowdhury, predicts the drop in supply will translate to a ten to 25 cent increase in the cost of gas over the next three to four weeks. But he says it could be longer depending on the storm's destruction.

"If infrastructure gets damaged because of the hurricane, roads are damaged, bridges are damaged, then it will be difficult to transport oil from that region to the rest of the company," said Chowdhury.

An ominous economic forecast, especially one week out from the Labor Day weekend, when millions of Americans will hit the roads.

"My buddy's coming in from Boston so we're going golfing. We're going to the Badger game too on Friday night. A lot of driving involved now that I think about it," said a driver.

"It will add up. Typically it costs about $50 to $60 to fill up. Now it might be $70 to $75. So that's a big chunk out of my pocket," said another driver. 

Despite the added expense, those refueling Friday night, say it's nothing they haven't experienced before.

"It sucks but you gotta deal with it," said a driver.

"Can't let the gas prices stop  you," said another driver.

The good news for people flying, ticket prices likely won't be impacted because the airline industry has its own reserve.