Ben Gurion Airport to Resume Normal Fueling Procedure at 8 P.M.

Departing flights were temporarily halted last week after signs of contaminated jet fuel were discovered at the airport; incoming flights were diverted to Cyprus.

Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz announced Monday that Ben-Gurion International Airport will resume its normal fueling procedures at 8 P.M., after a contamination in the oil supplies discovered last week led to an airport crisis, with flights delayed, diverted and canceled.

Israel's domestic flights resumed on Sunday the use of fuel that had been suspected of contamination, after tests showed that the fuel contains no hazardous materials.

Jet-fuel, el al, airplane
Ofer Vaknin

Departing flights were temporarily halted last Thursday after signs of contaminated jet fuel were discovered at the airport. Incoming flights were also diverted to Cyprus.

International flights arriving at Ben-Gurion Airport since have been carrying enough supplies to reach their next destination without having to refuel in Israel.

The decision was made after several tests carried out on a plane belonging to El Al airlines concluded that the fuel contains no dangerous elements and could be used for flights.

The decision to return to normal fueling procedures means that all outgoing flights from Ben-Gurion Airport will return to be refueled in Israel.

The fuel containing the greasy liquid was sent on Friday to an American Air Force lab in Germany for further testing, however, the lab refused to conduct the test, saying that they only deal with military matters and does not conduct experiments for Israel.

On Saturday the company asked the National Infrastructure Ministry for assistance in convincing the Americans to test the samples. Officials expressed reservations in doing so, arguing that it would be irregular to interfere in a private matter, particularly when there are issues of liability involved. The matter has been relayed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for further assistance.

Earlier on Monday, the Israel Airport Authority demanded that the Paz Oil Company explain why they sent documents saying that their oil was fine, when it in fact turned out to be contaminated.