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Gas Rationing Ends Saturday in New York City

By Jill Colvin | November 23, 2012 2:25pm | Updated on November 24, 2012 10:02am

NEW YORK CITY — The city's odd-even gas rationing came to an end at 6 a.m. Saturday — weeks after Hurricane Sandy sparked a fuel shortage, officials announced.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg lifted the emergency order Friday that limited drivers whose license plates ended in an odd number to buying gas or diesel fuel on odd-numbered days, and those with even plates buying gas only on even-numbered days.

Approximately 85 percent of the city's gas stations are now up and running, three and a half weeks after Hurricane Sandy battered the city and left thousands of homes and businesses without power, badly disrupting the region's gas distribution systems.

At the height of the shortage, some drivers were waiting as long as six hours in line for fuel, leading to chaos, fighting and price gouging.

A recent poll found that a vast majority of voters — 85 percent — approved of the rationing plan.

“The odd-even license plate system not only significantly reduced extreme lines, but also eased anxiety and disruptions for drivers at gas stations across the five boroughs,” Bloomberg said in a statement.

"With more than 85 percent of gas stations now operating — a substantial increase from just 25 percent two weeks ago — and Thanksgiving and Black Friday behind us, the odd-even license plate system will be rescinded starting tomorrow morning."