Maldives Airport Company Limited (MACL) gave a false statement regarding the fuel leakage from one of the tanks at Velana International Airport.
After a video that shows fuel leaking out of a tanker, MACL's media official informed Maldivian media that it was not a leakage but an overflow.
“It is not a fuel leakage but an overflow of fuel which can be restored” MACL's media official stated.
When asked how often that happens, he said that 5 years ago it had happened and the fuel was restored and used again.
However, the former deputy chief officer and aviation fuel handling expert Mohamed Niyaz stated that MACL media official's statement was untrue.
Niyaz stated that the tank had no overflow system has not been installed and that the leakage is most probably due to a rupture.
“There is no overflow system installed on the tank, leakage is due to a rupture of the tank.”
Regarding the video, Niyaz further said that there is no reason for oil to flow from there unless it’s a leakage. He also said that the integrity of the tank will be lost and that there can be a rupture at another part of the tank.
Niyaz has worked in the fuel handling department of MACL for years. He said that what needs to be done to recover the issue is to empty the tank and do a stress test. He said that the integrity of the tank is in question now.
Niyaz also said that the tank which had leakage was commissioned in the year 1988 and even at that time overflow mechanism did not exist.
MACL media officials had spoken hinting that the fuel can be restored and reused again. However, Niyaz had stated that the fuel cannot be used in that way. He further said that there is a system that can collect the spillage, but it cannot be used by airplanes.
MACL's media official refused to comment on this matter when questioned.