Contaminated fuel causes rescue vehicles to be shut down in Prince George

Published: Sep. 9, 2019 at 11:13 PM EDT
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PRINCE GEORGE, Va. (WWBT) - Several vehicles with Prince George Fire and EMS are out of commission after they were filled with contaminated fuel.

“We notified state operations center. We declared a local emergency. We activated our emergency operations center and began planning how we were going to handle this situation,” Director of Fire and EMS Brad Owens said.

Gasoline was put in vehicles that require diesel fuel, causing several medical vehicles to break down Monday morning.

“We immediately took action and shut all fire and EMS units down,” Owens said.

All EMS vehicles were shut down once the problem was discovered. Officials tested the fuel at all eight fire stations and two came back positive for contaminated fuel.

At one point, three fire engines, one ladder truck and three medical units were out of service because of the problem. The department is working to drain the contaminated tanks and get the vehicles back in service.

“We did not know how many units might have been affected, and we didn’t want to be in a life or death situation and have one of our units fail or cause an explosion that would cause any type of injuries,” Owens said.

County officials are working with a diesel vendor to correct the issue.

It is unknown how much the repairs will cost the county.

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