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article imageNorthern N.J. experiencing long gas pump lines due to shortages Special

By Leigh Goessl     Nov 3, 2012 in World
Clifton - Hurricane Sandy left a devastating aftermath. As recovery efforts are ongoing, one of the problems many residents in affected areas are currently facing are severe gas shortages and long wait lines at the pump.
After Sandy came through the U.S. northeast, she left millions of people without power, billions of dollars worth of damages and sadly, 90 deaths. Now as recovery and clean up efforts continue, along with power companies working around the clock to get people back online, many reports are surfacing of gas shortages.
With these gas shortages come long lines, some potential gouging and overall frustration as people not only need the gas to run their cars, but also generators, as many people remain without power.
Digital Journal spoke to Mary James, a resident of Passaic, N.J., who has not had power since Monday.
James told Digital Journal gas stations that have fuel are quickly running out of gas. When asked about what kinds of lines she's seeing at the gas stations, she noted that many of them are very long, including one that she saw earlier yesterday.
"Maybe [the line was] about three quarters of a mile. I thought it was pretty far," she said of a gas station in Clifton, N.J.
James describes cars not being able to pass by the gas lines as the lines of vehicles are backed up so far they block off the driving lanes on the main roads, including Route 3 and other nearby local roadways; she said she saw several lines all trying to merge to get into one gas station.
While waits at the operating gas stations are long, she told Digital Journal she heard this week approximately 70 percent of the gas stations in N.J. either have no power or are located in "power compromised areas." She also noted it is not uncommon for motorists to wait three hours in gas lines. Even worse, some have waited for hours, only to learn the station has run out before they reach the pump.
Yesterday this reporter had spoken to individuals in N.Y. who said there had been some gouging going on in the counties north of New York City, where gas has been hard to come by. James said she has not seen any gas gouging in Northern New Jersey, but noted police were present at all the gas stations.
"It's bad," James said, noting that tempers are sometimes running high. "If anyone has gas, they are not going anywhere because they want to save what they have."
She also mentioned problems buying perishable foods, such as milk. "If you can find milk, you're lucky," James said.
New Jersey officials are working to come up with a solution for the gas shortage.
According to CNN, plans are in the works to get the badly-needed gasoline into the state. Additionally, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie signed an executive order that limits gasoline sales, not unlike the way it was handled during the 1970s gas shortage. On even numbered dates (i.e. Nov. 4, Nov. 6, etc.) vehicles with even-numbered license plates can get gas; on odd numbered dates, the automobiles ending with an odd number can fill up.
"This system will ease the strain on those gas stations still operating, while we work to bring more online for the public to access fuel, in a manner that is fair, easy to understand and less stressful," Christie said, reported CNN.
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