Commission ordered to look into fuel contamination

Emergency fuel reserves will be tapped in order to alleviate near complete air traffic shut down, official says.

May 5, 2011 19:08
1 minute read.
Ben Gurion airport

Ben Gurion airport 311. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

Most departures from Ben Gurion airport were cancelled on Thursday after routine checks found aviation fuel supplies were contaminated, an airport spokesman said.

National Infrastructure Minister Uzi Landau announced the immediate establishment of a commission of inquiry into the fuel contamination that grounded dozens of flights coming into and departing from Ben Gurion Airport on Thursday.

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An Airports Authority official announced that the authority would tap into the emergency fuel reserve in order to alleviate the situation, Army Radio reported.

The gas problem was discovered a week and a half ago, but actions were not taken until Thursday.

Only aircraft that flew in with sufficient fuel to reach their next destination were being allowed to depart as scheduled.

The spokesman, Adar Avisar, said the cause of the contamination was not immediately known, and that it had been discovered early enough in the day to ensure that no plane had departed with fuel that might have been contaminated.

"There are no planes in the air that have received an order to land," he said.

Israeli media reports said aircraft bound for Ben-Gurion and due to depart from Tel Aviv later in the day would land in Cyprus and Jordan to fuel.

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