West Palm Beach police cars with engine failure up to 49; Officers using rental cars

Officers are driving around in minivans

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - West Palm Beach says the number of police cars that had to be pulled off the streets due to engine failure has risen to 49.

City Administrator Jeff Green said at this point they believe a tainted fuel shipment in the middle of March is to blame. All of those cars had traces of biodiesel in their tanks, which are meant for unleaded only.

West Palm Beach Police Public Information Officer David Lefont said it is not impacting public safety since the agency is supplementing with rental cars.

“We have captains driving around in minivans,” Lefont said.

Seventeen patrol cars have gotten new engines and are back in service.

The other affected cars are non-marked cars.

Miami-Dade County police reported they had to pull 67 cars with the same issue.

In West Palm Beach the cars affected are all Ford, which is why the automaker is investigating the case as well.

But Green said at this point they believe it was the fuel shipment. They’re currently investigating where the shipment came from.

An earlier version of this article had said Miami-Dade had to pull 120 cars. The actual number is 67.

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