Company working to retrieve bad gas in Austin

Published 11:30 am Thursday, October 13, 2011

A Mankato company that delivered high-ethanol content gasoline to area communities, reportedly including Austin, over the weekend is working to reverse the error.

Bruce Heine, spokesperson for Magellan Midstream Partners Petroleum plant, said the company is making significant progress retrieving the gasoline.

A manager at the Kwik Trip on Oakland Ave. said she was unaware of the faulty deliveries; the manager at Kwik Trip on Fourth St. NW said the gasoline was not delivered to that store.

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A Hy-Vee Gas employee said workers had tested the station’s gas for high contents of ethanol on Wednesday, but everything appeared up to state standard.

Minnesota gasoline cannot contain more than 10 percent ethanol, but some of the gas may have had up to 63 percent ethanol, according to the Minnesota Dept. of Commerce.

“One sample tested late Monday afternoon contained a 63 percent concentration of ethanol — well above the standard 10 percent maximum,” a news release from the Dept. of Commerce stated.

Heine said the bad gasoline was being replaced with gas from terminals in Minneapolis, Rochester and Mason City. He also said no gas is being distributed from the Mankato plant until the error is fixed.

“Our focus right now is on recapturing and replacing gasoline that did not meet the state standard,” Heine said. “We’re making significant progress.”

The communities involved include Mankato, North Mankato, New Ulm, Redwood Falls, Sleepy Eye, Albert Lea, Austin, Renville, Owatonna, Olivia, Winnebago, Le Sueur, Springfield, St. Peter, Belle Plaine, Blue Earth, Hector, Winthrop, Morgan, Gaylord and Fairmont, according to a news release.

Mike Ankeny, owner of Ankeny Mini-Marts, was unavailable for comment.