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Gas rationing begins in NY as power outages abate

Published: Friday, Nov. 9, 2012 11:43 a.m. CST

NEW YORK (AP) — A gasoline rationing plan that lets motorists fill up every other day went into effect in New York on Friday morning, as utility crews made some progress erasing outages that put thousands of new homes and businesses in the dark in a region still reeling from Superstorm Sandy.

Police enforced the new system at filling stations in New York City and on Long Island as drivers turned out before dawn to line up for their rations. At a Hess station in the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan, drivers said it appeared to be working so far.

The line to the station was just a block and a half long Friday morning, and customers said they waited about 15 minutes. Last week, some lines stretched for a mile or more.

The nor’easter brought gusting winds, rain and snow on Wednesday and early Thursday before it moved on. Snow blanketed several states from New York to New England and stymied recovery efforts from Superstorm Sandy as additional storm-weakened trees snapped and more power lines came down.

The utilities have said they are dealing with damage unprecedented in its scope and are doing the best they can. And there is no denying the magnitude of what they have done: At the peak, more than 8.5 million homes and businesses across 21 states lost power during Sandy.

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