- breakdown of more than 70 police cars over the weekend, most of which had been repaired and returned to service Tuesday.
- one-third of the Police Department's patrol contingent was sidelined with engine trouble.
Officials had expressed concern that the unleaded gasoline might have been mistakenly refilled with diesel, but results from a lab in Towson showed that
- ethanol was the apparent culprit.
- city's supplier, IsoBunkers of Norfolk, Va., was conducting its own tests and that the city's legal team believes the city can recoup all expenses related to the incident.
- Ethanol is mixed with gasoline at the pumps and is used to reduce carbon monoxide emissions, becoming more widespread in recent years as a replacement for methyl tertiary butyl ether, or MTBE, an additive that has led to concerns about groundwater contamination.
"Excess Ethanol Blamed in Breakdown of Police cars," 9/23/09, Baltimore Sun, by Justin Fenton