The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

Another view of the seaplane hangar

 

January 12, 2023



To The Eagle:

I am neither for nor against a seaplane hangar at the marina, but a writer in this column has been giving you inaccurate, misleading, and flat out wrong information trying to convince you to vote against one.

The Cessna Caravan he speaks of carries 11 passengers, not “2 to 6.” Being that the channel is over 150 ft. wide, there would be no crowding in the channel, even two Caravans could easily pass each other without a problem. Further USCG COLREGS Rule 18 e) states “A seaplane on the water shall, in general, keep well clear of all vessels and avoid impeding their navigation.”

The rant about fuel is nonsense as they are talking about a hangar, not a full service seaplane base. Most planes would fuel at Kelso or, with the new gas tax, Scappoose. Of note, the marina already has gas at the fuel dock, and has had it for many years. Avgas is actually less volatile than the gas at the marina. Avgas has a lower evaporation rate than autogas to prevent vapor lock at higher altitudes. It also has a higher ignition temperature; automotive gasoline has a typical ignition temperature of 300 degrees C, whereas Aviation gasoline is blended to ignite at 500 degrees C.

Spill containment and Fire Safety Training exists for the gas and diesel that are already being sold at the marina. Nothing new here, but again the question is about building a hangar, not a fuel base.

Don’t be afraid of seaplanes, they are part of the fishing and marine industry, both commercial and recreation. Ask anyone who fishes in Alaska.

Michael Moneyhan

Puget Island

 

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