Orlando Airport’s Jet Fuel Supply Could Run Out on Sunday

Orlando Airport’s Jet Fuel Supply Could Run Out on Sunday

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued a warning that Orlando International Airport (MCO) is running low on its supply of jet fuel, which could disrupt flights over the coming days.

The FAA said in an official notice that the busy Florida airport could continue to see supply issues until around 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday. It advised airlines that their planes should be stocked with enough fuel to fly into the airport and back out again without having to refuel in Orlando.


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In an operational update posted to Twitter early on Sunday, MCO disclosed that the reason for the supply issue was adverse weather conditions along the Gulf Coast that prevented ships from transporting the necessary fuel as scheduled. However, ships have now set out on their delivery run and should arrive within the next few days.

“Weather issues along the Gulf Coast had prevented reserve supply delivery of jet fuel at MCO. The weather has lifted and ships have departed,” the airport tweeted. “If flight disruptions occur, airline contingency plans are currently in place.”

As a consequence, some airlines are already making operational adjustments to avoid snafus at the central Florida airfield. Carriers are taking various steps to compensate for the unavailability of fuel at MCO, such as adding extra refueling stops for flights that are bound to or from Orlando.

United Airlines released a statement, saying, “Because of a shortage of fuel in Orlando that is impacting multiple airlines, we will add planned fuel stops on Sunday and Monday for some flights from Orlando. At this time, we expect to operate our full schedule to get our customers to their destinations as planned,” according to a spokesperson.

However, Southwest Airlines told USA Today that it doesn’t anticipate there being any operational impacts on its flights as a result of MCO’s reserve fuel shortage. The outlet also noted that international carrier British Airways seems to have added a stop to refuel in Miami on its service between Orlando and London Gatwick.

Big-Four carrier Delta Air Lines does not appear to have made any flight changes as a result of MCO’s supply issues, but it has issued a travel waiver that’s available to passengers booked on the potentially impacted departure dates, December 12 and 13.

Travelers who have plans to fly into or out of Orlando over the next few days should keep an eye out for any change to the flight status and schedule, and check periodically to see if their airline has issued any alerts or updates. If they choose to reschedule their flight, the rebooking date must be on or before December 16, with any change fees and fare differences for seats booked in the same cabin class will be waived.

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