A shortage of tanker truck drivers has caused fuel delivery disruptions at airports from Nantucket to California.
The Federal Aviation Administration issued a "Notice to Airmen" warning that some airports would not have enough jet fuel through Monday.
Flights were delayed at California's Santa Barbara airport, and some departing planes were forced to add stops for refueling last weekend. Meanwhile, the airport in Nantucket, Massachusetts, ran out of jet-A-grade fuel over the weekend.
Those problems followed a similar situation last week at the airport serving Reno, Nevada, and Lake Tahoe. - Bloomberg
These problems are strictly labor challenges and not supply issues with jet fuel in U.S. inventory. As early as May, we noted semi-truck driver shortages may spark fuel shortages by summer.
"We've seen unprecedented demand for Jet-A on the island, both in our corporate general aviation and our commercial air carrier traffic," Nantucket's assistant airport manager Noah Karberg told Bloomberg.
"I expect we're going to have ongoing issues for Sundays throughout the rest of the summer," he said.
The hiccups with deliveries are supply-chain oriented and come as travel demand is surging again. TSLA checkpoint travel numbers show air travel over the weekend is nearing full recovery from pandemic lows.
Delivery delays are having a meaningful impact on prices. Los Angeles jet fuel prices spiked last week.
Some domestic flights have had to make additional stops to refuel due to a lack of jet fuel at certain airports.
"We continue to closely monitor the situation and make arrangements to minimize any disruptions for our customers," United Airlines Holdings Inc. said in a statement.
At the tiny airport in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, fuel deliveries were delayed. There were also reports of delays at the Santa Barbara airport.
Americans are increasingly getting out of the house and traveling after a year of being cooped up inside. They're traveling on planes to resort destinations, and this has severely caught the travel industry off guard and unprepared to handle the surge in traffic.