The mogas debate

By MICHAEL G. MOONEY

The debate about using mogas in aircraft has been around my entire aviation career. I’m a pilot and love all things aviation, but after 25 years working as an aviation fuel supplier, I have some real concerns about the use of automotive motor gasoline (mogas) in aircraft.

Aviation fuel suppliers are often portrayed as the bad guys due to our strict policy prohibiting the sale of mogas by branded FBOs. I will try to explain what drives this policy.

Michael MooneyIn my younger days I would engage in debates with pilots at trade shows about the technical issues of mogas vs. avgas, such as RVP, ethanol, additives, octane, volatility, and quality. Like most debates, both parties walk away even more convinced their position is correct.

In 2005 I began to oversee the purchase of insurance for our company. Every spring for the past eight years, I have traveled to Atlanta, New York, and London to meet with aviation insurance underwriters during our policy renewal. There are only about a dozen underwriters willing to write the high level of insurance limits aviation fuel suppliers and distributors require.

As added protection for our branded dealers, we extend $50 million in coverage to those who qualify in the form of an excess aviation products policy. At these meetings we advise the underwriters on the status of our loss control program for our aviation products liability policy that covers the avgas and jet fuel we distribute. Drawing from all the knowledge and experience gained from these visits and combined with my more than 35 years in the aviation industry, I have identified the following concerns about the use of mogas in aircraft:

Oil refiners will not approve mogas for aviation use

I am not aware of a single oil refiner in the USA that will approve any grade of automotive gasoline they produce for aviation use. Without their approval and their underlying products liability coverage, you are using a product without the manufacturer’s warranty. Therefore, any underwriter placing a policy on behalf of someone wishing to sell mogas for aviation use is taking on a tremendous amount of liability. If there was a tragic accident resulting from the poor quality or inappropriate performance of the mogas and the plaintiff’s attorney names everyone on the suit, as is the norm, the refiner will simply point out that they do not warrant their automotive gasoline for use in aircraft.

Mogas is not the same as avgas

Knowing what I know about refined products distribution systems for mogas, I would never use it in the airplane I was going to fly. Most people have no real knowledge of the behind-the-scenes process and logistical journey mogas makes from the refinery to market. The more rural the location, the more steps in the journey. There are hundreds of pages of industry standards on how aviation fuel must be handled. These standards are referenced in the contracts between refineries, distribution terminals, and petroleum transporters using pipelines, marine vessels, rail cars, and road transport vehicles. The primary purpose of these standards is to ensure the quality of the product is controlled and maintained. These industry standards often have the power of law when applied in the courts. By comparison, the industry standards pertaining to mogas are not as complex because it was never intended to be used in an airplane.

Insurance for mogas

Aviation products liability claims are often blamed for bringing general aviation to the edge of extinction and played a major role in reducing the production of single engine aircraft in the USA. I am confident that aviation fuel products liability was a driving force behind the decision of some major oil companies to remove their brands from the aviation fuel marketplace. There have been three major oil company brands removed from the market in just the last two years.

Suppliers and distributors purchase aviation product liability insurance policies with very large limits because of the litigious society we live in. As an aviation fuel distributor, we cannot buy aviation products liability insurance for the sale of mogas for use in aircraft. The reason is that we cannot certify and document that mogas meets aviation industry standards. In order to have mogas meet industry standards, we would have to modify refineries and terminals to meet the specific and detailed aviation specifications. That would not be cost effective.

Aviators using mogas often fill up their cans at a gas station, or buy from FBOs willing to sell mogas. I would strongly advise any FBO selling mogas for aviation to do one very important thing: Ask your insurance agent or broker to provide an insurance certificate approved by the actual policy underwriter that has an endorsement that specifically states something to the effect that “this aviation products liability policy extends coverage to the sale of automotive motor gasoline (mogas) for use in aircraft.”

From what all underwriters have told me, this may be difficult, if not impossible, to obtain. Otherwise, if there ever is a claim, an unfortunate moment will result when it is discovered that the “products” policy was not for mogas sold for aviation use — it was for industry standard aviation fuel only.

I also suggest that any pilot who uses mogas in his airplane ask the FBO for a copy of its insurance certificate with this endorsement clearly stated.

The future of avgas

I found a photocopy of an article from an early 1990s issue of General Aviation News. The headline announced “Industry, FAA anticipate move to unleaded avgas by 1996.” Here we are 17 years later, and we are still using leaded avgas. Some say it may be another 10 years before a transition is completed.

Regardless, we all know that it is a question of when — not if — leaded avgas is banned. None of the various avgas fuel grades with unleaded formulations such as UL82, UL94, or UL97 has made it to the marketplace. The reason is economics: Distribution of these will require segregated storage and delivery system logistics from the refinery to the airport. At this point, no one is willing or able to justify the cost of this infrastructure.

We participate in a task force planning the future of avgas and it is made up of people from every segment of the aviation industry. Early on we agreed on one thing: This industry cannot support two separate grades of avgas.

It is my hope that we develop an unleaded drop-in solution. An unleaded drop-in product should be able to use the existing avgas distribution infrastructure, simplifying and reducing the cost of the process.

One of the reasons behind the extended delay in bringing a solution to market has been overcoming the challenge of a replacement fuel safely meeting the requirements of the entire GA fleet, especially those with high-compression engines.These high-compression engines burn a majority of the 100LL grade of avgas sold in the general aviation market.

I applaud those who are considering an “aviation grade mogas.” I hope they know they must overcome the challenges regarding product segregation and quality control in the supply chain. Perhaps they can. I put myself in the shoes of aircraft owners who can use a product with the performance specifications of mogas and those who experience maintenance issues with using 100LL. They compare the price of mogas with avgas and are further frustrated. I understand their frustration, but they are comparing apples and oranges.

There are significant costs associated with the requirements of producing and distributing a specialized aviation gasoline product such as 100LL. Unlike automotive motor gasoline, there are economies of scale that are difficult to achieve. Avgas, by volume, represents less than 2/10ths of 1% of the gasoline produced and sold around the world.

When the industry and the FAA settle on a final specification, I hope it is one that refiners are willing and able to produce. Unfortunately, as of today, we are left with only nine refineries producing avgas in the USA and Canada. This is down from the peak of 39 in 1989.

I wish we could end up having a designated aviation gasoline product that is more economical, more abundant, lead free and meets the requirements of the EPA while also meeting the performance requirements of the entire GA fleet. My gut tells me that is a very big wish.

 

Michael Mooney is vice president and Chief Risk Officer for EPIC, an aviation fuel supplier based in Salem, Oregon.

Comments

  1. John Smith says

    As someone that has been in the General Aviation industry for over 24 years I am sympathetic to all of the commenters reactions to Mr. Mooney’s guest opinion. When seeing this challenge through the eyes of a consumer it is easy to come to these conclusions. However, Mr. Mooney has clearly made a strong case that if you wish to use a product for which it is not intended, do not expect the existing FBO, distributor, or refinery channels to support it, nor assume liability for it. Basically, you are on your own.

    Many of my FBO owner associates make little, if any profit on avgas, due to the low volumes. Even at high margins, the cost of dispensing (trucks, personnel, cost of inventory, insurance, maintenance, etc) can exceed expected revenues.

    The solution to this challenge is for flying clubs and cooperatives to take over the dispensing of Mogas and avgas to members (even “day” members i.e. transient customers) who agree to assume the liability by signing a waiver. This will get the for profit FBO’s out of the business of having to support dispensing a fuel that they will likely never expect to turn a profit on.

    Mr. Mooney is to be commended on a good explanation of the challenges the industry faces. I look forward to visiting your flying club and purchasing Mogas from you in the future!

  2. Floyd Taber says

    Mr. Mooney

    You could do more than be the corporate dog for hire and make it so MoGas is good for everyone to use. I flew a Cessna 150 well over y700 hours with MoGas and now doing the same with a Cessna 172.

    As usual another person to be a hold up instead of a proponent for the change that is desperately needed. It is no wonder people give up on Aviation and do something else. God knows I am, almost ready 15 years of over regulation endless BS from the Feds and now this.

    Floyd

  3. Vaughn S. Price says

    Many times in the 1940’s , 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s ,I have landed on a highway and taxied up to the pumps and filled up on 73 ,80, or 91 octane automobile gasoline, in 450 P&Ws, 300 Lycomings, down to 40 hp continentals. the Pratt burned car gas without any loss of power. A lot of hot air about a non problem, profits are the driving force in the Petroleum Industry, and yes I was also a fixed base operator, retailer of such brands as Shell, Enco, and Texaco
    I have over 15000 hrs general Aviation, and have flown 139 different models from 1924 Travelair to 749 Constellation. My story is not Hot Air!

    • Kent Misegades says

      Wow, amazing, thank you for reminding us of the reality of aviation fuels from past decades. Congratulations on what sounds like a terrific aviation career.

    • Mark Wiley says

      Thank you for your sharing your experience Mr. Price. Janice, please get Mr. Price to share an article at length on this issue. He offers much more value to me as a reader who actually owns a plane STCd for mogas and is using it. Mr. Mooney has a right to his opinion, but it isn’t based on the validity of experience Mr. Price offers.

  4. Rich Bettencourt says

    So Kent how do you get AOPAs Mark Baker and EAAs Jack Pelton to move in the Mogas direction ? These two people have enough power to make things happen on this Mogas issue but all they ever talk about is this NEW fuel that they need to develop for GA. It’s like they do not have a clue what is needed to make GA survive! Here in California we have the seventy percent that can use Mogas but when will these organizations open there eyes and start WORKING for the members that pay there bills?

    • Kent Misegades says

      Rich, believe me, we have tried repeatedly for the past several years to educate the alphabet leaders, but to no avail. The only one who understands the topic and supports mogas publicly is Dan Johnson, head of the LSA organization LAMA. Not surprisingly, his is the only sector of GA that has seen consistent growth and great innovations in recent years. Praise also goes to Roy Beisswenger, director of the UL organization USUA. Thanks too to Ben Sclair and Janice Wood of this publication for allowing mogas supporters a forum.

    • says

      Rich – “…when will these organizations open there eyes and start WORKING for the members that pay there bills?” You need to know the history. Anti-mogas comes from AOPA. They represent their commercial members, who demand a 100 octane replacement and care not a whit for the 80+% users who don’t need 100 octane avgas. They are vehement that they don’t want a competitive low octane fuel on airports impacting the sale of 100 octane fuel which is so boutique already that they fear any decrease in demand. The AOPA mantra has always been, “We only need one avgas but it must be 100 octane.” Years ago I argued vociferously with the president of AOPA, Phil Boyer, over this stance, after I saw a string of uninformed articles in AOPA Pilot dissing mogas and then did the only thing possible, I voted with my feet and am no longer a member of AOPA because it doesn’t represent me. Unfortunately, before he retired Tom Poberezny joined EAA at the hip with AOPA and EAA fell in line with the AOPA mantra.

  5. HAB - SA says

    If I lived in the US, I’d boycott EPIC.

    This is noise – unadulterated noise with a less than pure motive! If Mr Mooney as “vice president and Chief Risk Officer for EPIC, an aviation fuel supplier based in Salem, Oregon” didn’t discredit Mogas , he wouldn’t be doing his job.

    There is no need to amplify nor ask questions as many of you have done so already. Thanks Kent (and others) for your clear unemotional statements of fact.

    I’ve been flying MOGAS here in South Africa for 8 years with confidence and my voice here is merely one of support.

  6. Bill H says

    You want mogas? Fine; how about some economics of selling the stuff? Whos going to pay for that tank? Your airport can’t get rid of its avgas tank for many reasons, so look at buying a new tank for mogas. Ufuel sells one for around $30K (I think its a 6000 gallon tank), plus freight, plus installation, plus permits etc, so your into it for at least $40K. How are you going to pay for the tank? per gallon profit? (that leads to what is a ‘fair profit’? your corner gas station makes around $0.15/gallon. is that a fair profit?).

    Now, how much mogas is going to be sold? In the US, the average airport sells somewhere around 140-150 gallons per day. if 50% of that is mogas, total profit will be $337/month. If you finance the tank over 10 years at 8% interest, your monthly debt service is $485, netting the airport a loss of for the month of $148.

    • Kent Misegades says

      No one is claiming that mogas is a viable money-maker in all instances. Obviously it is at around 115 airports in the US, who report the same net-net margin for mogas as for avgas, 50 cents per gallon or more. Do not confuse fuel from the corner gas station, where profits are made on perfumed coffee and gas is a loss-leader, to an airport. The average price advantage for mogas at US airports has been $1.40-$1.50 for the past two years, see the statistics on Airnav. Many airports that have added mogas have used surplus tanks left over from the days when there were multiple grades of avgas. Some have converted avgas systems over to mogas, which only requires a new placard. Adding mogas does not have to include the purchase of a new fuel system, but doing the math, 20,000g x 50 cents = $10K per year and a modest system can be amortized over four years, which is a terrific ROI. The bigger picture – only one out of then piston planes is flown regularly these days, mainly due to the high cost of avgas. This has a rippling effect on hangar rent, maintenance shops, Sportys and even Aircraft Spruce, where sales have dropped significantly due to lack of flying. If you want more people to fly, you have to reduce the cost of fuel. Do nothing and you drive more people away from aviation – there are plenty of other competing hobbies glad to take their money.

    • Dennis Reiley says

      The idea with a better mogas availability is that the price will be less leading to pilots flying more and thus using more fuel. The problem with the high price of fuel is the lack of airtime and thus fuel consumption. You can’t compare present costs with future costs in an effort to increase GA airtime.

  7. says

    “Aviation fuel suppliers are often portrayed as the bad guys due to our strict policy prohibiting the sale of mogas by branded FBOs.”

    Say what? Then what is going on at KPUW. Look on AirNav. Inter-State Aviation is a branded Phillips 66 FBO and has been for years and has been selling mogas for years.
    IL8 is another Phillips 66 branded airport. And so is KMBG.
    Then there is KMKJ a Shell branded airport. I’m sure you can find many more examples by searching my web site http://www.flyunleaded.com

    Actually this article appears to be fear mongering by the new distributor on the block. If anyone is noticing, their is no vertical integration in aviation avgas production and distribution anymore, i.e. Shell doesn’t sell Shell produced avgas, Exxon doesn’t sell Exxon produced avgas, Chevron doesn’t sell Chevron produced avgas, etc. In fact 100 LL production is totally opaque. No producer is willing to provide statistics about avgas production. In addition the major branders are shedding airport operations to companies like AvFuel and Epic. On airports in my area, Exxon has capitulated to AvFuel and BP has capitulated to Epic.

    What’s most ironic is that Mr. Mooney can rant all he wants against mogas use in aviation but the reality is that in the rest of the world there will soon be only two aviation fuels, Jet-A and mogas. And the biggest threat to 100 LL in the U.S. is the termination of TEL production by the single producer left in the world for what is rapidly becoming the last remaining market for its product, the U.S. aviation industry, which will probably happen before the 100 octane replacement is found, since it hasn’t been found in the last three decades of research.

  8. says

    M.O.N.E.Y. show them the money and the problem is solved. No incentive for refineries to approve and no incentives for Insurance company to do so either. If these new fuels think they are going to be home free with FAA approval, they be wrong. The money required to get the refineries and insurance companies on board will be even higher.
    Look at diesel prices, remember when it was cheaper than regular gas? It was for decades. What changed? The more cars that converted to diesel resulted in higher mpg and that was going to take a toll on gross sales and net profits. To compensate, refineries raised the price. Now it is 15% higher than 87 octane. Diesel is cheaper to produce (first output from the distiller process) so why does it cost more now that they are producing much higher volumes than they did 30 years ago? Higher volumes should make it cheaper.
    Tell Congress to pass a laws that reduce or eliminate such legal issues and the gas will flow where ever and when ever it is needed.
    Assuming that Mr. Mooney is correct about the differences in the handling of AVgas is why could MoGas for GA not just replace 100LL fuel. It would require a one time flush of the system. If 100LL is going to go away anyway, it is not a bad situation. Let the gas companies charge more. They will one way or the other anyway.

  9. Dennis Reiley says

    Mr. Mooney is a big part of the problem. As a major purchaser of fuel for aircraft he has a major say in whether the oil companies provide mogas for aircraft. If he and others of his ilk “demanded” mogas for aviation the oil companies would provide it.

    Do we really have to wait for a federal mandate to get mogas sold at all airfields?

  10. Ray Ebner says

    I know that I am no expert when it comes to this, but if companies such as Peterson have been successful to earn STC’s for the use of auto fuel, then the stuff cannot be as bad as Mr. Mooney would like to claim. I know a car stalling out, because of bad fuel is not nearly as bad as an airplane, but the government is pretty particular about automobile fuels too. I have been driving for almost 40 years now, and I have never had an issue with my vehicle not running, because of poor fuel. Most of the problem seems to be that certified aircraft are running on technology that is very antiquated, which requires the use of 100LL in the first place. If the FAA did not make these companies that manufacture engines give up their first born to certify better technology, this discussion would probably be moot and we would have been running on lower octane unleaded fuels for years.

  11. Joseph says

    Maybe if this is true then the AOPA and other groups should focus on getting laws passed to limit the liability of fuel contamination to the direct cost of the quality control failure. That is if it stops up the fuel injector you can sue them for the cost of the injector but not the loss of the plane, after all that is why you have insurance. This would put more liability on the pilot and the aircraft insurer and would probably increase liability insurance some, but should decrease fuel cost greatly. However I think this may just be the Fuel industry trying to convince us that we should try to limit their liability.

  12. Dr. Kenneth Nolde says

    With a Rotax engine in my CTLS, I have been using 91 octane mogas (no corn crap in it) for the better part of 5 years with no ill effects. I use 100LL when I am on the road and the FBO does not have mogas. I have found that my performance with 91 octane mogas and 100 LL is identical, but 93 octane mogas with ethanol simply does not perform with the same consistency. The 93 octane seems not to generate the same power as the other two fuels–when I could find 91 mogas I did blend in some 100LL. My bottom line is that mogas, the non-ethanol variety in particular is my fuel of choice. Besides, 100LL, and 91 and higher octane mogas are the recommended fuels for the Rotax engine.

    • Kent Misegades says

      Ethanol has 70% of the energy per gallon compared to gasoline, so at 10% one will have less power and range when using E10 compared to ethanol-free mogas. The higher AKI rating is only there to prevent detonation. Mogas actually has 3% more BTUs per gallon than Avgas.

  13. Jeff says

    Could the author cite at least one accident caused by mogas sold at the FBO? How about fuel sold at the local gas station.
    I was not aware fuel manufacturers “certified” their fuel for any specific use. Just that the fuel met certain specifications.Can this “certified” fuel be used in lawnmowers, boats or motorcycles as well? Is it certified for those uses?
    You mean to tell me all those county and city owned airports that sell mogas are doing it without insurance?
    Who are you trying to scare with your liability claims?
    Look this isn’t rocket science. There used to be many grades of aviation gasoline available. Then the FAA saw fit to come up with just one specification, and look at the problems we are having.
    Simple solution, unleaded ethanol free mogas and an unleaded 100 octane for the big boys. Set a spec and let the marketplace go…

  14. Jerry Johnson says

    I wonder why the chief risk officer for an aviation fuel supplier would be so biased? His job description explains it all. His diatribe is about insurance. Did he mention any actual accidents resulting from the proper use of Mogas? Is he promoting self interest? I question why his article justifies space on this site.

  15. says

    It is absolutely amazing that instead of utilizing his knowledge and skills to help bring to fruition and less expensive, acceptable, and viable fuel to GA, Mr Mooney takes the stand of a corporate rep. and continues to use “scare tactics” to suppress the advocacy of mogas. After working for years “directly” in the petroleum industry, (and not in some office far removed from the action), I know of and have worked first hand with those truths pointed out by Mr. Misegades in his response. Mr. Mooney, I appreciate the fact that you are pilot, which makes me wonder, why do you continue an antiquated position that affects something you say you do along with thousands of other pilots. Why not help us in GA put a stop to these frivolous litigations and the strangle hold that big insurance companies have on all we do. Or is your corporate paycheck more important than doing what’s right?

  16. Waleball says

    Why did it take this expert over thirty years to get concerned?
    All fuels even auto fuel is refined to ASTM STDS. The EAA and Petersen Aviation did extensive testing under FAA supervision before mogas was approved for aviation use in certain aircraft and engines.
    Sounds like a typical sour grapes statement “fueled” by a lawyer looking for a way to sue and make a quick buck at our expense!

  17. Kent Misegades says

    Where does one begin to inject the truth here about mogas and the myth of liability?

    Here is a first stab at it:

    1. Gasoline producers do not have to certify mogas for aviation use, that is already guaranteed by the mogas STC and TC and the fact that gasoline must be made to ASTM D4814 standard. The fact that a gasoline producer may state that their fuel is not for aviation is completely irrelevant, both technically and legally.

    2. Avgas has a separate distribution network primarily due to the presence of lead, which is treated these days like nuclear waste. Get the lead out, and it can be cheaply pumped in pipelines just as jet fuel and mogas are.

    3. Mr. Mooney’s comments on mogas are focused on cheap fuel from the corner gas station. That is a world apart from quality fuel purchased directly at a terminal and shipped to the airport. He is comparing apples to oranges. The truth is however that there is very little evidence that mogas from a corner gas station is bad for aircraft, when it meets the requirements of the TC or STC.

    4. Liability – lots of confusing mumbo-jumbo in his article about the non-existent problem of getting liability insurance coverage for the sale of mogas. Is he not aware that most GA airports in Europe sell Mogas, and that it is often delivered from the same company that delivers jet-fuel and Avgas? Call the big Falcon Aviation insurance company and ask for a quote to cover mogas, or your favorite firm.

    5. Mogas TCs – Mr. Mooney seems completely unaware that virtually all new piston engines from Lycoming, Continental, Rotax, Jabiru and others are Type Certificated to operate on mogas. That does not imply any gas from the corner station though – just like Jet-A and Avgas there are stipulations, eg AKI rating and no ethanol for mogas. Would these companies be doing this if they share his concerns over a fuel that he claims threatens the lives of anyone who uses it? If so, can he publish a list of NTSB reports to back up his claims?

    6. 70/30 split – the author included the other myth about who burns the most fuel, but like all other claimants has no facts to back this up. At least he says “majority” instead of 70% as NATA often claims. This is probably about right since we have heard that about 50% of all fuel sold for piston aircraft in Europe is mogas. Imagine though the effect on the 80% of all aircraft owners who could be burning mogas at $1.40 less than avgas, if it were available. That’s a savings of $1120 per year for someone burning 8 gph for 100 hours per year, the cost of an annual.

    Statements like those made by Mr. Mooney is a reason that many remain confused about mogas.

    • Greg W says

      Kent, I agree with most of your statements, however I believe that the article has some merit as well. It seems to be a question of “truth” and the problem with that is people keep muddling up the “truth” with facts.
      1. “Gasoline producers do not have to certify mogas for aviation use” and yet look at the Marathon web site about use of recreational gasoline in aircraft.”Marathon gasolines should not be used in any type of aircraft.” Yes it is not a leagle proabition but try and tell the jury.
      4. Liability – lots of confusing mumbo-jumbo in his article about the non-existent problem of getting liability insurance coverage for the sale of mogas. Is he not aware that most GA airports in Europe sell Mogas, and that it is often delivered from the same company that delivers jet-fuel and Avgas? It should not matter what Europe does, they have plenty of additional user fees, should we do that too, because it “works for them? As to the liability I was once involved with a threatened civil suit against the FBO I was at. The owner/operator had run his engine out of oil and claimed we had not properly serviced the aircraft some 30 hours earlier, nothing came of it but we still had the cost of defending against it. Lawyers do not work cheap and the defendant must pay while plaintiff often do not. That is real liability, do nothing wrong and yet defend at high cost against the “perceived” wrong doing.

      • Kent Misegades says

        Greg,

        Marathon and others indeed make such claims however they would be irrelevant in court. Owners of aircraft, cars, boats, etc. whose manufacturers approve of an ASTM D4814-compliant fuel, which Marathon’s is, have a right to purchase the fuel. Denying this would be prejudicial on the gas company’s part. Pilots are of course responsible to assure that the fuel meets the requirements of their aircraft, ie sufficient AKI and no ethanol. Lycoming and Continental also warned against the use of mogas for decades, yet this did not stop tens of thousands of pilots from using mogas in their STC-approved engines. Now Lycoming and Continental market their new ‘AF’ alternative fuel engines that may operate on mogas.

        My point in mentioning Europe is to provide additional evidence that extra liability related to mogas is a myth. Unless Mr. Mooney can cite NTSB accident reports and lawsuits aimed at mogas sellers, his arguments are pretty weak.

        Contrast this to the billions in dollars of property damage caused annually by ethanol in gasoline, sold knowingly and willingly by the same fuel producers who, according to Mr. Mooney, are scared of seeing their ethanol-free premium fuel in a tiny number of airplanes.

        • Greg W says

          “Irrelevant in court”, would depend on the jury in a civil case. I use Marathon gas and my current aircraft was certified with ARMY 73 Avgas,a fuel that did not have an ASTM spec., it could be argued that I do not need an STC to use autogas or that one would be needed to use modern Avgas as the airplane and engine were not tested with ASTM D-910 avgas. It is not worth the fight and cost, however and so the STC sticker is on the airplane. The people that would be on the juries are the same ones that fully believe that the country is at war. No offense meant to any service men, including three of my kids, but the U.S. has not declared war since 1941. That fact does not matter when people are told we are “AT WAR” that is what they believe. They are told it must be AVGAS, it must be 100 octane,(never mind it is actually “grade 100″. The way around is, as you advocate, Mogas and STC’s, above ground tanks at low cost, one small airport at a time. We will have to do this on our own with out big government help or G.A. flying will be gone. Keep up the great work on the national stage Kent, we all need a voice that can be heard at that level. The problem with the liability myth,(I agree it is mainly rhetoric from insurers and others that are involve such as the airport attorneys),is that it is a fear and as FDR said “all we have to fear is fear it’s self”‘ hard to do when so many believe in the fear.

          • Kent Misegades says

            Thanks for the encouragement, Greg. Clearly things are moving in the right direction, despite the widespread ignorance on this subject. The big problem remains the EPA’s ethanol mandates that affect even the ethanol-free blendstock supply. Congress appears to understand that the ethanol mandates are impossible to meet, so eventually, maybe, perhaps, they too will disappear. But who can predict anything these days from Congress?

    • James e Dearwent says

      What famous person a long time ago made the comment,The first thing we need to do is kill all the lawyers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *