Odd-even rationing for gasoline purchases began Saturday in 12 New Jersey counties: Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Morris, Monmouth, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union and Warren.

Gas shortage in Hillsborough
Gas shortage in Hillsborough (Townsquare Media)

Governor Chris Christie signed Executive Order 108 to prevent a fuel shortage and ease the problem of extended wait times/lines at gas stations across the state.

"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," Governor Christie said.

Once in effect, all gasoline retailers will be required to sell motor fuel only to those driving vehicles with license plates that adhere to the rules. On odd number days, such as November 3, the last number on one's license plate must be odd. The next day, a license plate's last number must be even. Specialized plates, or those not displaying a number, will be considered odd numbered plates.

Attorney General Jeffrey S. Chiesa said motorists and retailers who disregard this order will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

Since Hurricane Sandy, open gas stations have seen lines extending more than a mile. Some motorists waited longer than four hours to fill their vehicles and gas canisters.

Odd-even rationing was implemented in the U.S. in 1973 during the oil crisis.

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