Fuel Mix-Up Leaves Patrol Cars Stranded

Oct 06, 2009

The City of Baltimore police department had several of its patrol cars returned to service after a fuel problem left a large portion of the fleet incapacitated.  It is suspected that the unleaded tank at the city-run substation may have accidentally been filled with diesel fuel.


About 72 cars, or one-third of the total patrol car fleet, were affected over the weekend of September 19th.  Lab tests are being conducted to determine the exact nature of the problem.


Problems with the patrol cars first appeared on the afternoon of September 20th. It only took a few hours until the city began diverting cars away from fueling at the 24-hour substation. A spokeswoman for the general services agency said that 62 of the cars had been fixed and ready for service by the evening on Monday, September 21st.


However, it seems that the city’s police fueling station was not the lone source of trouble.  A fleet manager from the Maryland Transit Administration reported that 17 of his buses broke down on the same weekend.  The buses’ fuel was drained and replaced with new fuel, but the problem was not fixed.  The buses were not up and running again until technicians worked through the weekend to fix them.


The Baltimore Police Department said that their operations over the weekend were strained, but not significantly affected.”


Photo courtesy of davidsonscott15 under the Creative Commons License.