Steps I would have taken to solve #badgas mystery

After almost 2 months we are not further along in determining the following

  1. What is the contaminant in the fuel that is causing issues being motorist.
  2. What is the concentration of the contaminant that is responsible for the problem
  3. What is the source or possible sources of the contaminant.
  4. How was this introduced into the gas being circulated in the trade.

What do we know so far

  1. Motorist are having engine problems after purchasing gas
  2. Unwashed gum in gas is above limit of 5mg/100 ml
  3. Unwashed gum is said to be the contaminant, but how can that be when it is always present in gas.
  4. Rubis gas appears to have highest concentration of unwashed gum
  5. BSJ cannot conduct testing and must rely on a third party for some test

Steps that ought to be taken or should have been taken

  1. Samples of gas taken from stations should be sent to an accredited oil testing facility
  2. Testing facility should be asked to determine specific chemical composition of fuel and concentration of each chemical present.
  3. Testing facility should be asked to do comparison of chromatography with known “good” samples of similar grade fuel .
  4. Testing facility should be asked to compare both reading to international acceptable composition and concentration.
  5. Testing facility should be asked comment on results and likely effect of higher concentrations of chemicals on engines performance.
  6. Testing facility should be sent larger volumes of fuel and asked to facilitate  testing  on two test engines under tropical climactic  conditions and review performance results. One test to be conducted with know good quality fuel and second with suspected fuel.
  7. Testing facility should be asked to comment on results of test above and determine if issues being annunciated by motorist is reflective of test results that have been observed.
  8. Testing facility should be sent copies of Certificate of Quality (CoQ) for all imported fuel over the last six months, the CoQ is a standard requirement.
  9. Testing facility should be sent test results conducted by all importers over the last six months as well as retained fuel samples. These are supposed to be available  as under the Petroleum Quality Control Act(PQCA) , these results are to be kept for three years and submitted to the Minister of Mining and Energy on a Quarterly basis
  10. Testing facility should be sent samples of all fuel blends and additives well as test results after blending. Once again as mandated by the PQCA these are to be retained for 3 years and copies sent to the Minister of Mining and Energy
  11. Testing facility should complete testing on both imports and blended product and comment of chromatography plus other test results.
  12. Testing should facility should comment on effect on additive on final blend and possible issues if any when used in the concentration as noted from chromatography testing.
  13. All data related to date of import, date of blend, concentration of additives, type of additive, days between blend, storage and delivery, date gas was been delivered from these blends and to which stations they were delivered .
  14. All data related to stations ordered closed and test results from these stations and correlation between these stations and dates of delivery of each blend of fuel should be  examined.
  15. Status of  fuel storage tank when fuel was received ie volumes of fuel that was present in underground storage tank . We are trying to establish ratio of old fuel vs new fuel. All this information to be analysed by testing facility.


In short order one can be able to determine with a great degree of certainty the following

  1. If poor quality fuel was imported in the first place, with contaminants or concentration for certain chemicals above international recognized or accepted volumes.
  2. If fuel became contaminated or suspect after blending and agent that was responsible for this.
  3. Establish a clear link between the importer, blender, distributor and the affected gas station.
  4. Establish culpability for the issue.
  5. Determine how exiting volumes of #badgas should be disposed of


Is the above beyond the Professor and his time.

Mind you I have no Professor title, so I may be unqualified to speak on this matter, but despite this fact, the above would form a great part of my approach to solve this GREAT mystery.




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