Alva Review-Courier -

Airport manager reports finding cracks in runway

• NWOSU to offer aviation certifications

 

January 13, 2023



As people arrived for the Alva Airport Commission meeting Monday night, we saw Dale Logsdon, chairman of the commission, assisting a pilot in starting his small plane. Logsdon had a handy battery-powered jumpstart kit to get the pilot on his way. Even though the runway lights aren’t working at the Alva Regional Airport, the moon was bright enough that the pilot felt confident he could see the runway to take off.

It was discussed briefly in the meeting that smaller planes, many of which are equipped with bright landing lights, can land and take off without runway lights, especially if the pilots are familiar with the airport. However, larger planes generally need runway lights to land safely.

In addition to Logsdon, commission members present for the meeting were Terry Cline, Calleb Mosburg and Mayor Kelly Parker. Paul Kinzie was absent.

City Council Report

Parker gave a brief city council report. He said an executive session is scheduled for Tuesday’s city council meeting to discuss a contract with a potential city business manager. He was hopeful an agreement would be reached.

The mayor said budget worksheets will be going out to department heads soon. By mid-February the city will start putting budgets together for the next fiscal year. Parker asked about one of the commission members working with him and Airport Manager Derrick Courson on the airport budget. Those present agreed that Kinzie usually likes to work on the budget.

Parker said the city has received the first payment from the 522 EMS District. The Locust Street waterline grant survey deadline is approaching. The survey was sent out with stamped return envelopes, and several have been returned.

Airport Manager’s Report

December was definitely not the best month for fuel sales, according to Courson. He said fog and strong crosswinds caused some scheduled flights to divert to other airports for fuel. However, fuel sales have picked up in January.

During December, the airport sold 1,281.03 gallons of 100LL for $6,148.06 and 4,650 gallons of Jet-A fuel for $21,614.65. With the addition of oil sales, the airport had total sales of $19,772.63 last month. In December 2022, sales totaled $23,924.51.

Courson said he noticed the fire extinguishers were out of date. He had the 14 extinguishers serviced and recharged.

While doing his weekly inspection of the runway, Courson said he saw an approximately 150 ft. long crack in the runway involving 15 concrete panels. He said eight of the panels had a height difference of about an inch on each side of the crack while seven just had a crack. He took photos and emailed them to airport engineer Toby Baker and the mayor. Courson said Baker believes the cracking is due to settling of the ground underneath. He said the crack can be sealed to keep moisture out.

When Baker comes to Alva on the runway light project, he will look at the panels and make recommendations. He said the airport might consider replacing the panels.

Courson said he found another crack that was about 25 feet long. He said no information is published to provide a weight limit for the Alva runway. Commission members discussed the aircraft landing at the airport and didn’t think any were over an acceptable weight. Logsdon did question the weight of the sprayer that is used to spray for weeds along the runway.

Parker mentioned that Courson sent information tracking aircraft landings in Alva to Baker. The engineer was impressed and suggested Courson should present a program at the OAC convention.

Fuel Invoices

Cline made a motion to approve two invoices from ASAP Energy Inc. of $36,198.17 and $32,152.09 for aircraft fuel. Mosburg seconded, and the motion passed unanimously.

In later commission member comments, Cline said he and Courson have had discussions about fuel prices and making sure the Alva airport doesn’t stuck with higher priced fuel on hand while current fuel prices have dropped. Cline said he’s aware of other airports where this has occurred. “You’ve done very well here Derrick,” Cline said. “So far it’s work out,” said Courson.

NWOSU Aviation Certifications

“Northwestern has recently had approved some certificates of training that would be geared around different areas of aviation,” Mosburg reported. He listed some of the certifications: certified aviation management, aircraft electronics technician, certified aerospace technician core, private pilot, air traffic controller, airframe power plant mechanic and certified flight instructor.

Mosburg said courses would be offered in a program leading to a bachelor of applied science and art degree in technical management. It would include 41 to 42 hours of general education. He said he didn’t have brochures available yet, but he’d like to get input from commission members and their help getting the word out.

Logsdon said he read an article about airlines pairing up with universities for training of pilots and would try to locate the article for Mosburg.

A video of the meeting may be viewed at http://www.AlvaReviewCourier.com.

 

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