Weyrich's jet center in Paso Robles has run out of fuel

David Weyrich’s Paso Robles Jet Center at the Paso Robles Municipal Airport has run out of gas — literally.

The businessman, beleaguered with debts and foreclosures on other key real estate holdings, also controls the fuel operations that supply the planes and helicopters at the airport. Up to now, those operations have been “viable,” said Roger Oxborrow, manager for the airport.

However, this past weekend the Federal Aviation Administration’s National Airspace System notified pilots that fuel was “unavailable” at the airport, according to its Web site.

Chevron will not supply the airport with fuel until Weyrich wires the oil company payment in advance, Oxborrow said.

“They weren’t delivering the gas because they hadn’t gotten the money,” Oxborrow said.

Oxborrow hopes service will start again by today because “I’ve been told the check is in the mail,” he said.

In the meantime, about 100 gallons of fuel are available for an air ambulance or another emergency craft, Oxborrow said.

The home page for the Jet Center says it is “passionate about providing world class service and accommodations.”

The airport currently operates as a base for the California Highway Patrol helicopters and firefighting tankers, and is a frequent stop for military aircraft as well as private aircraft.

Oxborrow says a “comfortable” amount of fuel on hand at the airport would be around 3,000 gallons in the wintertime. In the fire season during the summer, they like to have at least 6,000 gallons in storage he said.

“I assure you the city is diligently working behind the scenes to remedy this,” he added.

Weyrich also owned the North American Jet Service, a private charter company headquartered at the airport, but the company closed last year with debts of at least $22 million.

--Melanie Cleveland