Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

April 18, 2014

Airport jet fuel tank gets replacement, upgrade

By Amanda Browning Daily News
Greensburg Daily News

---- — GREENSBURG – The Greensburg Municipal Airport replaced its outdated jet fuel tank with a new, upgraded version Thursday afternoon.

The Daily News spoke with Aviation Board Vice President Bill Ernstes to learn more about the new tank and why the airport chose to replace the previous model. Ernstes said the outdated tank no longer met standards and the fuel supplier said they would not deliver fuel until Greensburg’s equipment was updated because of liability issues.

According to Ernstes, the old tank did not have adequate protection to ensure that contaminants were prevented from entering the fuel. He said the new tank was purchased from Florida company Fuel Tech Inc. with the Airport Operation Fund.

Ernstes told the Daily News the new tank, which has “all the bells and whistles and meets all the standards,” is larger than the previous tank. By upgrading from an 8,000 gallon tank to a 12,000 gallon tank, the airport will be able to purchase an entire semi load of fuel, which Ernstes said will save money because the fuel supplier charges extra for the hassle of delivering a half load.

The new model, which will supply Jet A fuel to aircraft in need of fuel, was inspected by Homeland Security and features filters as the fuel enters and exits the tank, as well as a special pump. The tank also has the ability to be moved if necessary.

“With the expansion of the airport, which I hope succeeds, this tank is designed to be relocated,” Ernstes said.

The old tank, along with the fuel, was given to a local farmer with the understanding that the airport is not responsible for the equipment, the fuel or any accidents that may occur. Workers from local business Obermeyer Agri Group used a crane to remove the old tank and install the new one.

According to Ernstes, jets wishing to visit the Greensburg airport have to fuel elsewhere and then come in to the airport. He said having jet fuel on site makes the airport a more viable choice for pilots and predicts that more jets will be seen at the airport because of the convenience.

“It makes it more attractive for people if they can fly in here and fuel their planes up,” Ernstes said.

Ernstes said a crew from Fuel Tech will be at the airport around May 1 to complete the tank’s installation and to test it before allowing fuel to be added.

Keep an eye on the skies above Greensburg, there will likely be a lot more traffic there in the coming months.

Contact: Amanda Browning 812-663-3111 x7004; amanda.browning@greensburgdailynews.com