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Puzzling pump problem

We installed a Mepco vacuum/transfer tank system a while back, and this season so far we've lost 4 pumps-in each instance the shaft sheared, leaving the impellers just laying in the volute. The last one didn't last two weeks. Manufacturer's rep initially felt it was due to steam coming back to the tank-but we don't have live steam coming back. The next thought was that it was due to a spacer between the lock down bolt and the impeller, and this was supposed to have been changed-but the last one I pulled out which was supposedly a different design still had the suspect spacer.

Anybody seen anything like this? Certainly a first for me.

Thanks in advance-
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