The freefall at the pump halted this week, as gas prices in the D.C. metro area and nationwide went up for the first time in eight weeks.
A surge in crude oil prices over the past week bumped the national average for a gallon of gasoline up six cents to $3.63, according to AAA.
A commensurate increase in the price of a gallon occurred in the greater Washington area as well, going up to $3.66 from $3.60 since last Sunday.
AAA says that drivers have no reason to panic that gas will begin to scrape at $4/gallon again.
"Prices at the pump began to creep up slightly this week as a result of higher crude oil prices, which were in response to improved economic data," said AAA spokesman John B. Townsend.
Crude oil prices went up by about a dollar and a half this week, settling at $96.20/barrel at week's end.