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Bloomberg to end gas rationing in New York City

A fire and flood-damaged photo is displayed after it was salvaged by Deirdre Mathis McGovern, from the ashes of her parents' home in the Breezy Point section of the Queens borough of New York, Friday, Nov. 23, 2012. A fire destroyed more than 100 homes in the oceanfront community during the storm. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

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By Newsday
Friday, Nov. 23, 2012, 8:00 p.m.

NEW YORK — Everybody to the pumps.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Friday lifted an emergency order that imposed a 1970s-style odd-even rationing system for buying gasoline and diesel fuel in New York City. The mayor's order will become effective on Saturday at 6 a.m.

Bloomberg imposed gasoline rationing on Nov. 9 because long waits at gas stations had become the norm after superstorm Sandy disrupted the gasoline supply chain in the New York region.

The odd-even system, which made use of the last number of a vehicle's license plate, was designed to cut wait times and reduce price volatility, Bloomberg said.

Gasoline rationing ended at midnight on Nov. 16 on Long Island, as the Nassau and Suffolk county executives lifted emergency orders after gasoline lines disappeared.

As of Friday, 85 percent of the gasoline stations in New York's five boroughs were “operational” and the supply of gasoline to the city was expected to increase, Bloomberg said.

“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.

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