WESTOVER ARB, CHICOPEE Mass. (WGGB) — At a time when the defense department is closing military bases across the country, it’s investing nearly $25 million in the Westover Air Reserve Base in Chicopee.
It will fund a new fuel hydrant system with 14 outlets and two 210,000 above-ground storage tanks.
C-5s hold 323,000 pounds of fuel. Right now, they’re refueled using tanker trucks.
Colonel Steven Vautrain, the 439th Airlift Wing Commander, says faster fuel delivery is essential to the base’s mission. He adds, “Most times if we were to refuel the C-5 behind me completely using fuel trucks it would take 10 trucks and take about 7 hours between bringing trucks out here and the slow fueling rate. With the hydrant system, we can do that in about 90 minutes.”
The new system will be similar to ones used at major airports. The project will be completed in stages and is expected to take two years.