Airport Fuel Farm: Buying An Asset, Not A Liability

Private Hangar Fuel FarmFuel farms and delivery system infrastructure is the foundation of FBO revenue. In addition, dedicated fuel systems are a growing part of corporate flight departments and multi-unit hangar developments across the country. If you are in a position where you may be purchasing an FBO, corporate flight facility, or hangar development all with some level of fueling infrastructure, then it is up to you to determine the health and inspection status of that system. A faulty or inefficient system can strip you of revenues and even become your greatest liability if not proactively managed.

Over the last few months, HangarSphere had the privilege of collaborating with Air BP to provide a list of bullet points that should be inspected and reviewed prior to purchasing or taking over management of a fuel farm. This list serves as a baseline only. If you have any further questions, please contact your Air BP representative at

Minimum Considerations: Understanding System Capabilities and Safeguards

  1. Tank material grade and whether single or double walled
  2. Secondary containment for tanks and loading/unloading areas
  3. Emergency stop devices, fire alarms, and fire extinguishers
  4. Filtration accurately sized and correct media installed, along with up-to-date filter similarity data sheets
  5. Cross-drop prevention
  6. Low point water drainage system
  7. Pumps and meters calibrated/rated for the type of service
  8. Electrical equipment rated for the area
  9. Electrical grounding installed and verified

    Commercial Airport FBO Fuel Farm
    Commercial Airport Fuel Farms

Minimum Considerations: Obtaining And Evaluating Records Relating To Integrity And Status Of The Fuel System

  1. Facility/equipment manufacturer records and details of any upgrades or modifications
  2. Tank and piping corrosion inspection records
  3. Tank inspection records and next inspection date
  4. Tank gauging and leak detection records
  5. OWS inspection documentation and last cleaning date
  6. Ground monitoring well base line data
  7. Water defense system testing
  8. Cathodic protection testing
  9. Pressure control testing
  10. High level control testing
  11. Leak detection and interstitial monitoring testing
  12. Meter calibrations
  13. Hose inspections
  14. Maintenance records
  15. Any active or prior environmental remediation or baseline studies
  16. UST meets 40CFR280 regulations
  17. Permits allowing fuel storage and sales
  18. Local fire code approvals
  19. Last annual inspection of the fuel farm by the airport authority or Fire Marshall
  20. SPCC/SWPPP Plans
  21. Environmental Indemnification

In future issues, HangarSphere will dive further into fuel farms and delivery systems for FBOs, corporate flight facilities, and hangar developments, as they are an integral accessory to your operation. If you would like to have HangarSphere focus on specific fuel related editorial, please email us. We would enjoy hearing from you.

Grass Strip Fuel Tank
Grass Strip Fuel Tank

“Air BP is one of the world’s largest suppliers of both aviation fuels and lubricants currently supplying over 7 billion gallons of aviation fuels and lubricants to our customers across the globe annually.”

 Special Thanks to Air BP’s Mary Ann Crugnale and John Stumpf for their coordination with HangarSphere in support of this editorial piece. For questions regarding the Air BP Sterling Card, please contact Mary Ann. For questions related to fuel farm and delivery infrastructure, please contact John Stumpf.

2 thoughts on “Airport Fuel Farm: Buying An Asset, Not A Liability”

  1. Interesting subject, one i look forward to learning more about in your forthcoming articles.

    It would beneficial to airports if some of the bigger fbo’s followed the airline model, and formed fuel farms. It must be easier for an airport to work on lease terms and master planning with them instead of the big oil companies.

  2. nice, however,
    add under No.1: does the tank still have its data plate?
    Also, if there is any fuel in the tank, when was it delivered? If it is old you may have to pay to have it tested or disposed of.

    Good luck.

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