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Answer Man: Enough fuel to fill up a 747?

Dear Answer Man, two underground gasoline tanks were installed at a new gas station in town this past week. They're huge and one of the workers told me they each hold 20,000 gallons. The thought came to me, how many gallons of fuel does a Boeing 747 hold? — Paul Mathison, Preston

Fascinating question. According to Boeing, the 747-400ER can hold about 63,500 gallons of fuel. That fully loaded 747, flying 3,500 miles nonstop, would get about 1/5th of a statute mile per gallon of fuel. That's about what my 1998 minivan currently gets per gallon, and don't ask me how much motor oil and power steering fluid it uses.

So they'd have to bury one more tank at that new gas station in Preston to match the capacity of a 747. By the way, that's a new Casey's General Store that's going up, along U.S. 52 just below the lofty location of the Branding Iron supper club.

You might be interested to know that for Jet A-type fuel, which is what they pump at the general aviation terminal in Rochester and other airports around the area, the average cost per gallon is about $5.50.

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