American Airlines has asked pilots to conserve fuel, citing supply shortages at downline stations that may soon lead to refueling stops on select routes.
American Airlines To Pilots: Please Conserve Fuel
Already battling operational difficulties around pilot availability, American Airlines has asked pilots to conserve fuel when possible to avoid further delays. Even with diligent conservation of fuel, however, supply shortages may soon force technical stops on many AA routes. American cites three reasons for the potential additional stops:
- truck drivers
- fuel supply
All are in short supply and that has meant many smaller stations simply do not have the fuel to support operations.
In a memo to pilots, John Dudley, Managing Director of Flight Operations, noted this has spread from a western issue to nationwide issue:
“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.”
To compensate, American Airlines will carry extra fuel into impacted airports (“tankering”) or add fuel stops. Dudley also asked pilots to taxi with one engine in order to conserve fuel.
“As our country continues to face multiple challenges, let’s work together as a team to operate reliably, safely and as efficiently as possible…
Our team continues to work around the clock to monitor the situation and minimize the impact on our customers.”
While the fuel shortage issue is not unique to American Airlines, Delta, Southwest, and United Airlines have not warned of similar fuel stops nor reported extended operational difficulty around fuel.
For at least the next month, your American Airlines flight from a smaller station could foreseeability have an extra stop. During this summer in which domestic U.S. skies are packed, be sure to plan plenty of time to make connections in case of unforeseen delays or stops enroute.
image: American Airlines