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Investigators To Examine Whether Dirty Fuel Caused Baltimore Bridge Crash

A safety probe into a Baltimore bridge collapse will determine whether contaminated fuel played a part in the accident whereby a giant ship lost power and crashed into the bridge forcing it to collapse. 

Early investigations suggest that the Singapore-flagged Dali cargo ship was setting off from the Port of Baltimore to Colombo, Sri Lanka, when it apparently lost power and crashed into a support pillar of the Francis Scott Key Bridge. 

The lights on the Dali, a 948-foot-long container ship capable of carrying 95,000 tonnes of cargo, began to flicker about an hour into the trip, prompting a harbor pilot and assistant to report power issues and a loss of propulsion. 

The bridge collapsed on impact and tumbled into the Patapsco River, with the crew managing to send a last-minute mayday call to the police just in time to stop traffic. Emergency responders rescued two people from the water while another six remain missing.

An oil executive has told Fox News there’s some validity to reports that contaminated fuel potentially caused the ship’s engine failure and triggered the accident.

"It's just stealing money, the companies selling them. If nobody's watching closely enough, they'll give them contaminated fuel,United Refining Company CEO John Catsimatidis said in response to a contributor asking how the dirty fuel could get onto the ship. 

"Contaminated fuel is being sold to the [New York] schools and sold to the MTA when the MTA or the schools are not watching closely enough. You know, you give them 80 percent real fuel and 20 percent garbage. And the FBI should be looking into that," he added. 

Supply chain management company Flexport has warned of a vicious feedback loop and supply chain disruptions following the collapse of the Baltimore Bridge.

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“It’s not just the port of Baltimore that’s going to be impacted,” Ryan Petersen, the company’s CEO has said. According to Petersen, the port’s closure in Baltimore, Maryland, was just one factor that will contribute to shipping delays.

By Alex Kimani for Oilprice.com

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