COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- The same recent phenomenon that caused fuel shortages at local gasoline stations has now spread to some airports.
Dave Zelenok of Colorado Springs told KRDO NewsChannel 13 that on Monday morning, he was scheduled to fly from the Colorado Springs Airport to Chicago but the flight had to stop at Denver International Airport for fuel.
"My plane didn't have enough fuel to make it there (Chicago), so it had to land in Denver with what little (fuel) it had left," he said. "I was supposed to fly to Chicago and then to western Pennsylvania but now am being re-routed from Denver to Washington, D.C., to get to my destination. That's going to put me seven hours behind. Others (passengers) won't even get to their destinations today."
Zelenok also said that a flight from Colorado Springs to Houston had to stop at the Pueblo Airport for fuel.
"I was talking with some pilots who were just in Hilton Head, South Carolina and Fort Walton Beach, Florida and there was no gas there, either," he said. "My nephew lives in Burlington, Vermont and (that airport) is out of fuel today. I'm not sure what's going on. It's pretty embarrassing."
According to other news reports, a shortage of drivers to deliver aviation fuel is the primary reason for the shortage, and the situation largely affects some mid-sized to smaller airports; more than 20 flights were delayed or canceled during the Independence Day weekend in Fresno, California.
As of late Monday morning, seven flights were listed as delayed at the Colorado Springs Airport, with five showing delays from 30 minutes to more than an hour. American, Southwest and United are the affected airlines.
However, the airport said that flights could have been delayed for other reasons besides lack of fuel, and that any delay was not from departing the airport but anywhere else along the way where an unscheduled fuel stop was made.
To check on flight information, visit: https://coloradosprings.gov/flycos/flight-status.
At 2:30 p.m. Monday, the airport released the following statement:
“The Colorado Springs Airport has been informed of an issue regarding a supply shortage of jet fuel with fuel provider, Valero. A contingency plan has been put in to place involving tankers delivering fuel directly to the service supplier, however a nationwide shortage of drivers may affect fuel delivery. Airlines are operating as scheduled and passengers are advised to contact their airline with any questions."
Valero and Laini Mambo, manager of SkyWest Airlines at the Pueblo Airport. did not respond to requests for comment Monday.