Marathon Addresses Fuel Quality

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Marathon Addresses Fuel Quality

WHEELING, W.Va. -- Marathon Ashland Petroleum LLC (MAP), operator of approximately 3,700 Marathon and nearly 90 Ashland convenience stores, said it discovered and is correcting problems with gasoline quality originating from the company's 220,000-barrel-per-day (bpd) oil refinery in Catlettsburg, Ky.

Foreign substances were found in some gasoline in West Virginia. "We are in cleanup mode right now and the problem at the refinery has been corrected," company spokesman Chuck Rice told Reuters.

The terminal containing 87 and 89 octane gasoline at Marathon's Marietta, Ohio, terminal is closed as the tank is being cleaned, Rice added. It was expected to be back up by Friday.

Findlay, Ohio-based MAP is the downstream venture of Marathon Oil Co., a 62-percent-interest owner, and Ashland Inc., a 38-percent-interest owner. Company officials met with representatives from West Virginia's governor's office, and the State Division of Labor, Weights and Measures Department on Monday and Friday after a rust-like substance was found in gasoline supplies at some dealers in the state, and was traced back to a problem at the Catlettsburg refinery.

"We have notified our gasoline distributors of this issue," Mary Ellen Peters, Marathon's senior vice president of marketing, said in a statement. "We're continuing to test all points of the distribution system to detect and address any other issues that may arise."

The company continues to investigate terminals along the Ohio River, where 94 percent of the oil products produced at the Catlettsburg plant is shipped via barges, the report said. MAP has a refining capacity of 935,000 bpd.