Arik Air at the weekend commissioned its privately owned mini-depot for the storage of Jet A1, popularly known as Aviation fuel.
Arik Air, Nigeria’s largest commercial airline at the weekend commissioned its privately owned mini-depot for the storage of Jet A1, popularly known as Aviation fuel. The depot is located within the Arik Air Aviation Centre at the Murtala Muhammed Domestic Airport, Ikeja, Lagos.
The Depot which will serve as a strategic reserve, according the Arik Air’s Deputy Executive Vice President, Mr. Chris Ndulue is to assist the airline manage its fuel requirements properly.
The fuel depot has capacity for 100, 000 litres of Jet A1 and comes equipped with the full compliments of a depot and is an above ground facility which makes the fuel free from water.
The Technical Director for the depot, Mr. Owolabi Oriola said the facility has an added advantage of a relaxing chamber which will remove sediments and water from the fuel before being dispensed. It also has a double wall tank to control spill.
The mini-depot is to have five browsers, two of which are on ground while three others are on the way.”The browsers also have the facility to remove sediments and water from the fuel before dispensing,” Mr. Oriola said.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony, Arik Air’s Chairman, Sir Joseph Akinola Arumemi-Ikhide said it was a thing of joy for the airline to build its first private depot. He said: “We are doing this because more often than not we have challenges with fueling our aircraft which have caused flight delays. Doing 150 flights daily, with plans for another 45 flights to make 200 within the next one year, means we have to remove all obstacles to smooth operation.”
He stated that the commissioning of the depot is just a tip of the iceberg. “We are going to expand this facility to over five million litres in the next one year. We are going to commission one million litres in Abuja, Port Harcourt already has some and we are adding to it.”
Sir Arumemi-Ikhide reiterated the commitment of Arik Air to safe and reliable operations. “We have the youngest fleet in Africa; all our aircraft are modern. We believe life does not have a duplicate and we want to ensure that people enjoy and not endure flying. There is difference between enjoying and enduring flying.”
He expressed gratitude to President Goodluck Jonathan for setting up a committee to look into the disagreement airlines have with Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) and other aviation agencies. The committee, he said, has started work and will make its recommendations known soon.
Arik Air is West Africa’s leading commercial airline. It now operates a fleet of 26 state-of-the art regional, medium haul and long haul aircraft. The airline currently serves 22 airports across Nigeria as well as Accra (Ghana), Banjul (Gambia), Cotonou (Benin), Dakar (Senegal), Freetown (Sierra Leone), Monrovia (Liberia), London Heathrow (UK), Johannesburg (South Africa) and New York JFK (USA).
The airline currently operates over 150 flights daily from its hubs in Lagos and Abuja.