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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-91-096
Details
Synopsis: ABOUT 0915 MOUNTAIN STANDARD TIME, ON SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 25, 1990, A FIRE ERUPTED AT A FUEL STORAGE AND DISPENSING FACILITY ABOUT 1.8 MILES FROM THE MAIN TERMINAL OF STAPLETON INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT AT DENVER, COLORADO. THE FACILITY, REFERRED TO AS A FUEL FARM, WAS OWNED BY UNITED AIRLINES AND CONTINENTAL AIRLINES. UNITED AIRLINES' PORTION OF THE FUEL FARM WAS OPERATED AND MAINTAINED BY AMR COMBS. FROM THE TIME FIREFIGHTING EFFORTS WERE INITIATED IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE FIRE ERUPTED UNTIL THE FIRE WAS EXTINGUISHED, A TOTAL OF 634 FIREFIGHTERS, 47 FIRE UNITS, AND 4 CONTRACT PERSONNEL EXPENDED 56 MILLION GALLONS OF WATER AND 28,000 GALLONS OF WATER AND 28,000 GALLONS OF FOAM CONCENTRATE. THE FIRE BURNED FOR ABOUT 48 HOURS. OF THE 5,185,000 GALLONS OF FUEL STORED IN TANKS AT THE FARM BEFORE THE FIRE, ABOUT 3 MILLION GALLONS WERE EITHER CONSUMED BY THE FIRE OR LOST AS A RESULT OF LEAKAGE FROM THE TANKS. TOTAL DAMAGE WAS ESTIMATED BY UNITED AIRLINES TO HAVE BEEN BETWEEN $15 AND $20 MILLION. NO INJURIES OR FATALITIES OCCURRED AS A RESULT OF THE FIRE.
Recommendation: THE NTSB RECOMMENDS THAT THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION: CLARIFY WHICH DIVISION WITHIN THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION HAS RESPONSIBILITY FOR INSPECTIONS OF FUEL STORAGE FACILITIES ON THE PROPERTY OF CERTIFICATED AIRPORTS AND ASSURE THAT THIS INSPECTION RESPONSIBILITY IS CONSISTENT WITH REGULATORY AUTHORITY.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Aviation
Location: Denver, CO, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA91FZ001
Accident Reports: Fuel Farm at Stapleton International Airport
Report #: AAR-91-07
Accident Date: 11/25/1990
Issue Date: 10/9/1991
Date Closed: 12/8/1998
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FAA (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s):

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 12/8/1998
Response: A-91-96 ASKED THE FAA TO CLARIFY WHICH DIVISION WITHIN THE FAA HAS RESPONSIBILITY FOR INSPECTIONS OF FUEL STORAGE FACILITIES ON THE PROPERTY OF CERTIFICATED AIRPORT & ASSURE THAT THIS INSPECTION RESPONSIBILITY IS CONSISTENT WITH REGULATORY AUTHORITY. BECAUSE THE FAA'S ACTIONS MEET A-91-96, IT IS CLASSIFIED "CLOSED--ACCEPTABLE ACTION."

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 9/29/1998
Response: (Letter Mail Controlled 10/2/98 2:29:34 PM MC# 981205) AS STATED IN THE FAA'S LETTER DATED 11/30/97, THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE FLIGHT STANDARDS INSPECTOR & THE AIRPORT CERTIFICATION SAFETY INSPECTOR WITH RESPECT TO FUEL STORAGE FACILITIES ON THE PROPERTY OF CERTIFICATED AIRPORTS HAVE BEEN CLARIFIED. ADDITIONALLY, AIRPORT CERTIFICATION SAFETY INSPECTORS WERE DIRECTED TO INSPECT ALL FUEL STORAGE FACILITIES ON AIRPORTS CERTIFICATED UNDER 14 CFR PART 139 TO ENSURE COMPLIANCE WITH 14 CFR 139.321. A COPY OF ORDER 5280.5B, AIRPORT CERTIFICATION PROGRAM HANDBOOK, WAS ALSO FORWARDED TO THE BOARD ON 11/20/97. THE ORDER CONTAINS GUIDANCE TO AIRPORT CERTIFICATION SAFETY INSPECTORS CONCERNING THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE AIRPORT OPERATORS FOR ALL FUEL STORAGE FACILITIES ON THE AIRPORT.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 7/9/1997
Response: AS STATED IN THE FAA'S LETTER DATED 11/30/97, THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE FLIGHT STANDARDS INSPECTOR & THE AIRPORT CERTIFICATION SAFETY INSPECTOR WITH RESPECT TO FUEL STORAGE FACILITIES ON THE PROPERTY OF CERTIFICATED AIRPORTS HAVE BEEN CLARIFIED. ADDITIONALLY, AIRPORT CERTIFICATION SAFETY INSPECTORS WERE DIRECTED TO INSPECT ALL FUEL STORAGE FACILITIES ON AIRPORTS CERTIFICATED UNDER 14 CFR PART 139 TO ENSURE COMPLIANCE WITH 14 CFR 139.321. A COPY OF ORDER 5280.5B, AIRPORT CERTIFICATION PROGRAM HANDBOOK, WAS ALSO FORWARDED TO THE BOARD ON 11/20/97. THE ORDER CONTAINS GUIDANCE TO AIRPORT CERTIFICATION SAFETY INSPECTORS CONCERNING THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE AIRPORT OPERATORS FOR ALL FUEL STORAGE FACILITIES ON THE AIRPORT.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 2/4/1992
Response: Safety Recommendation A-91-96 requested that the FAA clarify which of its divisions has responsibility for inspection of fuel storage facilities on certificated airport property. As you have pointed out, the elimination of the exemption cited above means that the certificate holder will have to ensure that the fuel storage facilities comply with 14 CFR Part 139, and the airport certification inspector will have the responsibility to ensure that the certificate holder complies with the regulations. Based on this commitment to modify the regulation, Safety Recommendation A-91-96 is being classified as "Open--Acceptable Response" pending this regulatory change.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 12/23/1991
Response: FAA POSITION IS THAT MODIFICATION OF 14 CFR 139.321 TO ELIMINATE THE EXEMPTION STATED IN 139.321 (H) WILL REQUIRE THAT THE AIRPORT CERTIFICATION INSPECTOR WILL THEN HAVE THE RESPONSIBILITY TO INSURE THAT THE CERTIFICATE HOLDER COMPLIES WITH THIS PORTION OF THE REGULATION BY INSPECTING ALL FUEL STORAGE FACILITIES DURING THE ANNUAL INSPECTION.