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Procedures Summarized On Gasoline, Shoes, Food For Those Long at Sea


Because most of the food, transportation and shoes they require are furnished by the Navy itself, naval personnel are not. usually familiar with OPA rationing regulations or with the Navy procedures for putting them into effect. This is especially true of personnel who have been at sea or overseas for long periods. Knowledge of -some of these rules can save time and tempers when it becomes necessary to obtain rations either from OPA local boards or from Navy custodians. The following brief summary may be helpful in this connection.


In general, Naval personnel are subject to Office of Price Administration gasoline rationing regulations and, with the exception of official travel under orders, must go to local OPA War Price and Rationing Boards for gasoline rations required for private vehicle travel. In the case of official travel under orders where transportation by private automobile is specifically authorized, Acknowledgments of Delivery, OPA Form R-593, will be obtained from cognizant issuing officers in the Navy.

Driving while on leave. Naval personnel on leave for more than three days who have access to an automobile are entitled to obtain from OPA special furlough rations at the rate of one gallon for each day of leave up to a maximum of 30 gallons. In order to obtain this gasoline it is necessary to present to the local OPA board original copy of leave papers and the mileage rationing record (OPA Form R-534) for the automobile to be used.

Special convalescent rations. Naval personnel on leave while convalescing from illness or injury acquired on active duty are eligible to apply to local OPA boards for special gasoline rations to cover travel to and from home or resort or other place of recuperation if the cognizant medical officer certifies that in his opinion travel by private automobile instead of other means of transportation would materially aid in recovery. Leave papers and certification of cognizant medical officer must be displayed at time of application.

Official travel. To obtain gasoline rations for performance of travel under orders, either temporary additional duty or change-of-station, where transportation by private automobile is authorized, personnel will apply not to OPA local boards but instead to cognizant naval officers for Acknowledgments of Delivery, OPA Form R-593. These forms may be obtained from authorized custodians who will compute the mileage involved and endorse the orders to show the number of forms issued. The issuing officer is responsible for filling out and signing the Acknowledgment of Delivery forms including the name and rank of the recipient and the make and license number of the automobile to be driven. These forms are non-transferable and must be used only by the person to whom issued.

Temporary additional duty. In the case of temporary additional duty, the authority to travel by private automobile must be granted by BuPers or by commands authorized by BuPers to issue travel orders and must be contained in a separate paragraph in the body of the orders. Exception to this rule is made in the case of personnel returning from duty afloat or overseas ,in which such authorization may be granted by endorsement on the orders by the commandant of the naval district to which such person returns.

Change-of-station. In all cases of permanent change of station, authority to travel by private automobile may be granted by endorsement on the applicant's orders by the officer authorized to deliver such orders. However personnel ordered to a new station for a short period of temporary duty to be followed by duty afloat or overseas are warned that no provision is made either by OPA regulations or Navy procedures for returning automobiles to place of regular residence.

Home-to-work-driving. Navy personnel assigned to shore duty in the United States and not quartered at their station may apply to local OPA boards for supplemental rations to cover driving between residence and post of duty if a car-sharing plan has been organized or if alternate means of transportation are not available.

Miscellaneous driving. Naval personnel may also apply to local boards for supplemental rations to cover necessary in-course-of-duty driving where no official travel orders have been issued or for which travel orders may have been issued but lack authorization for transportation by private automobile. In the case of necessary change-of-residence driving due to change of duty and where the travel orders involved lack authorization for transportation by private automobile, application may also be made to local boards. In like manner, persons discharged from the naval service may apply to local boards for rations to return home.


In general, Naval personnel may purchase shoes from commercial shoe stores by using coupons from OPA Ration Book Three, when they have them, or by using shoe-purchase certificates (Forms OPA R-1705-B) obtained from naval custodians.

Clothing and small stores. No ration coupons are required for shoes purchased from clothing and small stores or from Army Quartermaster stores.

Ship's service stores and post exchanges. Ship's service stores ashore and Army or Marine Corps post exchanges operate under rationing in the same manner as commercial shoe dealers and coupons or certificates are required.

Issuance of shoe certificates. Naval personnel who need shoes which they expect to buy from commercial shoe dealers may get the shoe certificates which they need from authorized naval custodians. There is no inflexible rule as to the number of pairs of shoes which an individual may have, provided he in fact needs them.

Discharged personnel. Personnel already discharged may not receive shoe certificates from naval custodians but instead should, if they do not have a War Ration Book Three, apply to their local OPA board for reissue of Book Three. The reissued Book Three will contain two valid shoe stamps.


War Ration Book Four. Personnel are eligible to obtain War Ration Book Four or other ration currency with which to acquire rationed foods from their local board if they will reside in the United States for a period of 60 days or more and are not subsisted or authorized to be subsisted in a general mess and do not eat 14 or more meals a week at a general mess, organized mess or other mess where the rationed foods used are acquired by the use of ration checks issued by the armed services.

Special food rations. Personnel who do not have and are not eligible to receive food ration books may obtain temporary rations of rationed food from a local board in three cases:

  1. If they are on leave or furlough for a consecutive period of 72 hours or more and will eat at least one meal during that time at home or at the homes of relatives or friends, or
  2. Even though they are not on leave or furlough, they will eat at least nine meals a month at home or at the homes of relatives or friends, or
  3. They are temporarily in the United States and will eat at least nine meals a month at home or at the homes of relatives or friends. Applications for temporary rations should be made on S&A Form 570, which will be filled out at the direction of the commanding officer. If this form is used, either the serviceman or his host may present the application; otherwise, the serviceman must apply to the local board and explain the reason for his failure to have the application on S&A form 570.

Navy personnel who are eligible to receive food ration books may apply to the local board for additional ration currency if their health requires more rationed foods than can be obtained with the books. The application must contain a doctor's statement showing why additional food is needed, the amount, and why unrationed foods cannot be substituted.

Discharged Personnel

Persons discharged from the naval service and not possessing OPA ration books may apply to OPA local boards for reissue of Book Three which contains shoe stamps and Book Four which contains coupons for meats, sugar, butter and processed foods.


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Transcribed and formatted for HTML by Rick Pitz, HyperWar Foundation