New Jersey Governor Chris Christie implemented an odd-even rationing system on Saturday to reduce the hours of waiting that residents have endured to fill up their gas tanks in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
Thousands of people throughout New Jersey are still without power, as temperatures continue to drop. The power outage has left many without necessities such as water and food, forcing many to search for these items in the few areas that do have electricity. Many started running low on fuel, and had to endure hours of waiting and miles of lines at gas stations, many of which were short on supply.
Governor Christie confronted the problem this weekend, signing an executive order to alternate days in which people can get gas. The system is based on license plates, where plates ending in an odd number are able to fill up on odd days of the month. Those with even-numbered license plates can obtain gas on even numbered calendar days. After two days, the system is already making a difference.
"The lines are better, I got gas this morning and only waited 25 or 30 minutes," said Brian Johdos of Scotch Plains. He continued, "There is a noticeable difference."
Local police monitored lines over the weekend. A line at the Exxon in downtown Westfield stretched to nearly two miles long, and was patrolled by about 10 police officers. Those who attempted to cut in line were turned away. Some stations were even forced to shut down the pumps due to unruly behavior.
"Police are enforcing the rule," added Johdos.
Many prices at gas stations in Union County hover around $3.52/gallon.