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GENEVA, SWITZERLAND, May 20, 2016 / BUSINESS AVIATION NEWS – Avfuel’s number one priority has always been safety, ensuring a reliable supply of clean, dry fuel to its Network of global locations. Furthermore, as an industry leader setting the standard for safety, Avfuel offers its branded locations FAA Approved Part 139 Training, as well as an Online Rampside Training Course to ensure its Network has access to comprehensive safety training solutions. But knowing safety is the ultimate concern when handling aircraft, there are items of which pilots should be always be aware.

When fuelling an aircraft, it’s imperative to be proactive and monitor for fuel quality. Paying extra attention to fuelling processes can pay off in preventing a costly mistake. Here are a few items to look for when fuelling; however, this is by no means an exhaustive list:*

Know what certifications the fuelling location has received and what type of training its employees complete.

  • Training courses could include the International Standard for Business Aircraft Handling (IS-BAH) Audit or the FBO’s own training program.
  • Ask to see staff’s fuel quality training certificates to ensure those handling your aircraft are qualified. 

Ask to see the FBO’s inspection forms and test records. The FBO should have a routine schedule for checking fuel quality and maintaining equipment. Check to see if these tests were recently completed and up to industry standards. Staff should be running tests on a daily basis and keeping accurate, detailed logs of results and processes.

Be present. One of the most important safeguards as a pilot is to be present. Keep an eye on the fuelling and towing procedures to monitor for proper handling. Be aware of your surroundings: 

  • Ensure trucks are clearly marked as containing either Jet A or Avgas. This helps prevent cross-contamination and reassures you the correct fuel is going into your aircraft.
  • Look around to notice what is stored inside and out of the facility. For instance, fuel system icing inhibitor (FSII) should always be stored inside or kept covered to avoid rain or snow accumulation—this prevents water infiltration that could disarm FSII.
  • Look for spills on the ramp. 
  • Trucks should be properly chocked and remain three meters away from aircraft to safely clear aircraft vents and the running portion of fuelling equipment. This reduces possible issues with hot aircraft components (engines, exhaust pipes, brakes). Note: This is an NFPA standard, but the local AHJ has the final call for proper distance.

These are just a few of the comprehensive items pilots should consider when fuelling—though simple enough, it’s all too easy to just land the aircraft, let line personnel do their business and take off. However, when dealing with multi-million dollar machinery and the well-being of those in the vicinity, it pays to be proactive and pay attention. It takes only a little more effort, but helps avoid a costly mistake.

*Are you part of an operation that buys full loads from Avfuel Corporation? Call us at 734-663-6466 to gain access to Avfuel’s Rampside Training videos for an inside look at how to train employees—new and recurrent—on the proper handling of fuel.


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