NEW KNOXVILLE – Recent disruptions of fuel service had the Auglaize County Airport Authority (ACAA) for the Neil Armstrong Airport considering the addition of a fuel storage tank.
Armstrong airport manager Ted Bergstrom explained to the group at their June 8 meeting that the May 7, 2021 ransomware cyberattack of Colonial Pipeline fuel delivery systems was still creating delays throughout the nation’s fuel supply system, including deliveries of Jet A fuel to the airport. “Usually, we can have an order delivered within two days,” he said. “Now it can take a week.”
In response, Bergstrom presented the ACAA with a proposal to install a 12,000 gallon above ground tank for storage of Jet A fuel. Cost is estimated would be $136,715.
“As an historical demand for Jet A can fluctuate, service to higher volume purchasers can become a challenges when multiple groups all need Jet A before deliveries can be scheduled,” he explained.
He said the installation of the tank would help ensure a steady supply fuel. There was no action taken on the proposal. Bergstrom said the information would be saved for future discussion, when it would be decided who would be financially responsible or if there will be a sharing of cost.
In regards to runway maintenance, the airport manager also presented a proposal to purchase a $6950 traction-powered debris sweeper. Bergstrom said that due to the current spalling status of some concrete panels of the apron areas, sweeping the ramps was a regular and time-consuming process.
He said that he saw during demonstrations that the FODBuster® Sweeper was able to remove sand, rocks, metal parts, chipped concrete, asphalt, safety wire and other ferrous and non-ferrous debris. “I even saw it pick up wrenches,” he said. The ACAA has asked that Bergstrom review the unit in service at the Muncie Airport prior to purchase. The purchase was pre-approved by the ACAA up to $7,000.
In regards to the June 12 grand opening of the airport’s new terminal, Bergstrom said the day will begin with a morning breakfast, activities for families, music and exhibitions by various aviation-related groups.
“The Experimental Aircraft Association (EEA) will be providing pancake and sausage breakfast at the event, with lunch available from food trucks from Buckland Acres Bistro and Ranger Concessions. The Derfers truck is serving ice cream,” he said.
Shuttle rides to and from the airport will move people back and forth between off-site parking and the airport. Tents, tables and chairs are available for those who wish to relax and enjoy the day.
The evening finishes with an after-dark 5 K race down the run ways and fireworks. He said the 5K has 415 runners registered already, with a cap of 500. He added runners can sign up the day of the race. More information on the 5K can be found at https://www.facebook.com/FlyMeToTheMoon5k.
The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.