A shortage of jet fuel, coupled with supply chain issues and an urgent demand from firefighting aircraft, continues to cause problems at airports around the West.
In Nevada, state and federal lawmakers said they are investigating a possible shortage of jet fuel that could delay cargo delivery and passenger travel at Reno-Tahoe International Airport in the coming days.
A spike in demand for jet fuel both by commercial airlines and from firefighting aircraft in Montana and the Pacific Northwest led to departure problems and daylong flight delays recently at Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport.
In California, recent flights in and out of Fresno Yosemite International Airport were disrupted by jet fuel shortages blamed on the lack of tanker truck driver deliveries.
Lawmakers said the Reno-Tahoe airport serving Nevada’s second largest metro area faces a shortage of jet fuel that could force the cancellation of cargo and passenger fights, potentially restricting the flow of tourists and essential goods into the northern part of the state.
The Reno airport’s shortage is caused by a confluence of factors, including a scarcity of tanker truck drivers, said Stacey Sunday, a spokeswoman for the Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority.
Elsewhere, Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon is allowing truck drivers to work longer hours while they deliver fuel that might be needed for firefighting aircraft elsewhere.
Other Western governors including South Dakota’s Kristi Noem have signed similar orders, although Gordon’s still prohibits truck drivers from driving when tired. Government rules usually limit truck drivers’ road hours to prevent fatigue-related accidents.
American Airlines on Monday said it might have to add stops to certain flights because of fuel delivery delays at some midsize airports.
“American Airlines station jet fuel delivery delays initially affected mostly western U.S. cities, but are now being reported at American stations across the country. Delivery delays are expected to continue through mid-August,” according to a company release.
Plataforma Informativa de Aviación Comercial líder en América Latina.