Flight BA272 is actually a non-stop flight from San Diego to London. But the British Airways Airbus A350-1000 took the passengers on board for a short hop to Los Angeles on New Year’s Day. The reason: The plane had to refuel before it made its way across the USA and finally the Atlantic.
The reason: San Diego Airport is struggling with a kerosene problem. The culprit is apparently a leak in a pipeline that occurred at the end of last year.
However, the repairs are taking time. And the California airport is threatening to run out of fuel.
The Federal Aviation Administration FAA warns of this in a so-called Notice to Air Missions (Notam for short). “Fuel not available” says it.
On January 4th, the airport could be completely without fuel. The order mentions that the problem could last until January 7th.
But there is already a shortage. According to the portal Paddle your Own Kanoo, many airlines have already had to fill up with extra kerosene in order not to have to refuel in San Diego for the onward or return flight. Lufthansa is also affected. She heads for San Diego from Munich. On December 28th, return flight LH467 was cancelled, the December 30th and 31st routed via Los Angeles and the January 1st routed via Chicago.
British Airways canceled the flight on January 2nd. Both Alaska Airlines and United Airlines are also rerouting their flights out of San Diego for refueling. “Due to an airport-wide fuel shortage at San Diego International Airport, your United flight will make a stopover to pick up additional fuel before proceeding to Chicago,” United said in a statement to its customers.
There are occasional kerosene shortages at airports. Only recently there were problems in Orlando because a delivery of kerosene was delayed due to weather problems. In South Africa, too, some airlines, including Lufthansa, had to reschedule in October because a tanker was delayed due to bad weather.
After an accident in a refinery, there was also a fuel shortage at Vienna Airport in the summer. Airlines were advised to refuel abroad.
This article was written by Laura Frommberg
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The original of this article “Lufthansa has to divert flights due to lack of kerosene” comes from aeroTelegraph.