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Old 16th March 2018, 23:38   #1
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Angry Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

I witnessed an unfortunate incident of rage and vandalism yesterday night.

My father had parked our Honda City VMT outside his office, which is at a short distance from our home. When he returned, by-chance I was standing at the main gate and noticed some damage to the fuel lid of the car.

Someone had completely messed up the fuel lid with what appears to be a sharp tool such as a screw driver so as to gain access to the fuel tank. The damage was concerning, however it was limited to the fuel lid and since it was dark, we did not analyze it anymore and assumed it to be a case of fuel theft.

What, however, I was curious about was that the petrol showed negligible change in level, i.e. no theft. I thought that the thief would have not been able to reach the fuel levels.

Next morning while going for a walk, my dad casually thought about assessing the damage and was shocked to find sugar crystals and masala near the fuel cap! It was an attempt to damage the car engine! It was pure case of vandalism!

I immediately gave a call to both my local mechanic and Honda service adviser to be told that it is a serious case. The Honda adviser was himself shocked to hear this and said this is the first time he is hearing of such a case. The local mechanic was surprisingly calm, he said he's seen many such cases and it's not something to worry about. He too, however, couldn't understand at to why would anyone do such a thing to us. Both suggested the same steps to repair the damage.

I did a little reading on the internet and verified what both the above gentlemen advised. I decided to go with the local mechanic owing to his extra experience in handling such cases.

All the fuel (some 25ltrs!) was drained out, complete fuel tank opened and cleaned. All pipes and injectors were also opened and cleaned thoroughly. Necessary filters were changed and new fuel was then added. The mechanic (and 5 of his helpers) put a drop of fuel to their respective tongues and all of them said it was indeed sweet, verifying that a decent amount of sugar was used. The old fuel was rendered useless. The complete process took some 4-5hrs.

The car is running fine now. It has however left a decent hole in my wallet and a bigger one in my heart. Areas around the fuel lid have been scratched and dented, and will keep reminding me of this incidence.

It was a really disheartening experience for me. I don't understand what people get by all this, I guess other person's misery is what they aim for.

Attaching a few pictures.
Attached Thumbnails
Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!-img_3708.jpg  

Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!-img_3716.jpg  

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Old 16th March 2018, 23:49   #2
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

Why would anyone do such a thing?


Someone googled ways to damage cars and executed it quite poorly in my opinion (Thank god for that) .The fuel filler car is damaged enough to raise suspicion.

This has to be personal .. can't be a random act of stupidity.

Last edited by AbhiJ : 16th March 2018 at 23:51.
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Old 16th March 2018, 23:51   #3
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

It is a pet form of passive revenge of the idle mind. Fortunately, it is a myth - https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/sweet-revenge/
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Old 17th March 2018, 00:04   #4
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

I sympathize with you on your suffering and I am at loss of words for mental condition of the person who did this. But he must be a rookie or a kid doing it either out of some jealousy or is in a bad state of mind and did it for his perceived 'fun'. Honda City fuel lid opens without any lock. It has a push mechanism to open it if I am not wrong. At-least mine does (3rd Generation). After that it was only a matter of twisting the cap. So there was no need to damage the lid. Just a thought.
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Old 17th March 2018, 00:09   #5
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AbhiJ View Post
Someone googled ways to damage cars and executed it quite poorly in my opinion (Thank god for that) .The fuel filler car is damaged enough to raise suspicion.
+1. The vendals haven't done it in a neat way. Something that suggest they are not professionals. Or maybe they have just started? Who knows!

Btw, Delhi has been very unkind to my WagonR as well. Thankfully never to this extent but my car's monograms were forcefully peeled off, tail light was broken twice and the car was keyed several times!

Last edited by Sherlocked : 17th March 2018 at 00:16.
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Old 17th March 2018, 00:15   #6
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bansal.sushant View Post
I witnessed an unfortunate incident of rage and vandalism yesterday night.
Sir, whatever may be the diagnosis of your mechanic, I suggest you make an official Police complaint about this.
This kind of tampering with your vehicle's Fuel lid suggests that someone harbors a deep seated hatred toward your father and it would be best for the police to investigate and get to the bottom of this.
Someone takes the trouble to damage the fuel lid of your vehicle and introduce foreign material into it, is not someone who is doing this for fun.
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Old 17th March 2018, 00:21   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AbhiJ View Post
Why would anyone do such a thing?


Someone googled ways to damage cars and executed it quite poorly in my opinion (Thank god for that) .The fuel filler car is damaged enough to raise suspicion.

This has to be personal .. can't be a random act of stupidity.
Exactly. I am glad the fuel lid was able to gather my attention and thus raise suspicion. I would have kept driving the car otherwise, causing damage.

There is no doubt that it wasn't a random act of stupidity. What gets a little weird is that my father rarely takes this car, it is usually driven by me, he took it yesterday as it was parked in the most convenient location, so identifying his car would have not been easy. More over, we are not able to understand the reason for this vendetta.

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Originally Posted by msdivy View Post
It is a pet form of passive revenge of the idle mind. Fortunately, it is a myth - https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/sweet-revenge/
Yes. Even my car cleaner and sweeper were aware that it ruins the car, however, they didn't know the complete thing.

I read a few articles, including the above, before deciding what to do. I didn't know how much sugar was added so had to get the entire fuel tank opened and cleaned. The sweetness in fuel kind of proved it be the better option.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherlocked View Post
Btw, Delhi has been very unkind to my WagonR as well. Thankfully never to this extent but my car's monograms were forcefully peeled off, tail light was broken twice, keying all over the car etc.
I have faced this also, but I always took as a by-product of owning a car in Delhi.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ithaca View Post
Sir, whatever may be the diagnosis of your mechanic, I suggest you make an official Police complaint about this.
This kind of tampering with your vehicle's Fuel lid suggests that someone harbors a deep seated hatred toward your father and it would be best for the police to investigate and get to the bottom of this.
Someone takes the trouble to damage the fuel lid of your vehicle and introduce foreign material into it, is not someone who is doing this for fun.
Thanks for your suggestion. We dialed the PCR number in the morning and complained, unfortunately no one showed up. Will be filing a written complaint tomorrow.

Last edited by noopster : 17th March 2018 at 06:17. Reason: Merged back to back posts
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Old 17th March 2018, 00:25   #8
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bansal.sushant View Post
The mechanic (and 5 of his helpers) put a drop of fuel to their respective tongues and all of them said it was indeed sweet, verifying that a decent amount of sugar was used.
Sugar doesn't mix in petrol, though.
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Originally Posted by bansal.sushant View Post
You're right, it doesn't. However sugar gets melted and may form a suspension (colloid, chemically), something like how sand forms in water (slightly different case). The above is what I conclude, I may be wrong. Please correct me if that's the case.
Nope. If the petrol tank is hot enough to melt sugar, you have bigger issues. The smallest of those would be a burnt car. I think your mechanics went through some placebo.

Last edited by mayankk : 17th March 2018 at 00:35.
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Old 17th March 2018, 00:29   #9
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Sugar doesn't mix in petrol, though.
You're right, it doesn't. However sugar gets melted and may form a suspension (colloid, chemically), something like how sand forms in water (slightly different case). The above is what I conclude, I may be wrong. Please correct me if that's the case.
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Old 17th March 2018, 00:39   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bansal.sushant View Post
Thanks for your suggestion. We dialed the PCR number in the morning and complained, unfortunately no one showed up. Will be filing a written complaint tomorrow.
With the photos you have taken, I suggest you visit your local police station and launch an official complaint.
Additionally tag Delhi police on its twitter account with the relevant photographs and an official complaint.
Usually they will ask you to make a formal complaint at the local police station.
Once it is flashed on social media, it tends to get the deserved attention of the people in power involved.

Mumbai Police has a very active & dedicated cell monitoring its twitter account and I am hoping the same is with Delhi Police.
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Old 17th March 2018, 03:11   #11
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

One of my drivers did the same thing to one of my cabs.

I got it fixed under insurance. Since such cases are rare, it was tough making the insurance company admit that it lies under the clause 'By malicious act'. It did take time, but they did it.

My suggestion, if such a thing happens to you, get an FIR registered first and then inform your insurance company.

If they say it is not covered, show them the policy wording.
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Old 17th March 2018, 04:34   #12
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sunilch View Post
I sympathize with you on your suffering and I am at loss of words for mental condition of the person who did this. But he must be a rookie or a kid doing it either out of some jealousy or is in a bad state of mind and did it for his perceived 'fun'. Honda City fuel lid opens without any lock. It has a push mechanism to open it if I am not wrong. At-least mine does (3rd Generation). After that it was only a matter of twisting the cap. So there was no need to damage the lid. Just a thought.
I don't think it was either a rookie or a kid. Maybe some jealous, maybe someone in a bad state of mind, or maybe someone having a grudge.

The lid opens via the push mechanism only when the car is unlocked. Once the car is locked, the lid won't open.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ashutoshb View Post
One of my drivers did the same thing to one of my cabs.

I got it fixed under insurance. Since such cases are rare, it was tough making the insurance company admit that it lies under the clause 'By malicious act'. It did take time, but they did it.

My suggestion, if such a thing happens to you, get an FIR registered first and then inform your insurance company.

If they say it is not covered, show them the policy wording.
Oh. Thanks for the information. I thought that the insurance company won't accept the claim, so I already got it fixed via the local mechanic. I will see if anything can be done now.

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Nope. If the petrol tank is hot enough to melt sugar, you have bigger issues. The smallest of those would be a burnt car. I think your mechanics went through some placebo.
Oh, thanks for informing. I have the some amount of old fuel in a bottle, will myself check it.
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Old 17th March 2018, 07:55   #13
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

could there be chance that the local mechanic/s be part of this? unless there is some lunatic imbecile out there,or someone is holding a personal grudge on you/your family.

More over you did say that the mechanic has seen many such cases. so yours doesn't seem to be one off case. Do check if there are any CCTV's around the location.

besides, I can understand the sugar part but why also try to add masala? seems like an amateur job to me.
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Old 17th March 2018, 08:06   #14
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bansal.sushant View Post
I don't think it was either a rookie or a kid. Maybe some jealous, maybe someone in a bad state of mind, or maybe someone having a grudge.
Where do you park the car, is there anyone in the neighborhood looking for that spot? or did you have any arguments relating to parking spots or anything in your vicinity?

Ok, now coming to Sugar and Petrol, I have heard this for many Years but Sugar should not dissolve in Petrol? It can clog the lines like sand or anything else, have a look here.


https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/sweet-revenge/

https://auto.howstuffworks.com/fuel-...n-gas-tank.htm


So your mechanic has done the cleaning and changed the filters, it should be ok to carry on.
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Old 17th March 2018, 09:28   #15
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Default re: Someone put sugar in my petrol tank!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bansal.sushant View Post
The mechanic (and 5 of his helpers) put a drop of fuel to their respective tongues and all of them said it was indeed sweet, verifying that a decent amount of sugar was used.
Doubtful that they really tasted anything sweet. As several others have pointed out, sugar does not dissolve in petrol. They must have gotten carried away in the situation.

Or, and forgive me if I'm out of line here, but considering all possibilities, could it be possible that they were also involved in the whole thing? Just a thought.
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