MIAMI (CBS4) – Another day of delays and cancellations at Miami International Airport after last weeks fire which destroyed a pump in the airport’s fuel farm.
Airport spokeswoman Maria Elena Levrant said as of 9 PM, 79 flights were canceled Sunday. In addition, 85 flights were delayed.
Last week airport spokesman Greg Chin said the existing fuel pump system was a total loss after Wednesday’s explosion and fire; the entire system will have to be replaced. A preliminary investigation into the cause found that the blaze may have been caused by a short circuit at one of the pumps
“Thankfully, our underground pipe system from the fuel farm to the airfield was not affected. This will allow a phasing process that will help MIA to provide near to normal operations by next week,” said Chin.
The fire broke out when one of the pumps in the fuel storage area located east of the runways exploded, according to officials. The fuel farm has six fuel tanks, each holding millions of gallons of jet fuel.
Four temporary pumps from Central Florida were delivered to the airport last Thursday. Levrant said they two of the temporary pumps are installed and functioning. She’s quick to add that though they are operation, they are still having to use fuel from tankers. Levrant said early next week they plan to install four high performance pumps that are already on site. Once up and running, they should put the system back to full capacity.
The fuel comes to the airport via the Everglades Pipeline, which runs in a 35-mile arc west from Port Everglades through Fort Lauderdale, Dania Beach, Cooper City, Pembroke Pines, Miramar and Hialeah before reaching the airport. It transmits about 55,000 barrels of jet fuel each day. Officials said the Everglades Pipeline showed no damage from the fire.
Travelers with flights out are being urged to contact their airlines to confirm that flights are on time.