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2001 Oil Storage Regs Site Compliance Audit

2001 Oil Storage Regs Site Compliance Audit

The DEFRA 2001 Oil Storage Regulations come into full force from 1st September 2005 and place major responsibilities on ALL operators who use or store more than 200 litres of oil.

In addition other regulations require you to assess the condition of your oil tanks, oil pipes, site drains and separators and keep them serviced and in good condition.

Failure to comply, carries the risk of PERSONAL CRIMINAL LIABILITY for the person(s) deemed to be inday to day control of the oil.

The regulations apply to commercial, industrial and institutional above ground oil installations with an installed capacity in excess of 200 litres throughout England. They also apply to domestic installations, where installed capacity exceeds 3500 litres. In time it is expected that similar regulations will follow throughout other UK regions, notably Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Bunded tanks are now a legal requirement at all installations that fall within the scope of the regulations. A bunded tank consists of a ‘tank within a tank’, with the outer tank (or bund) being able to accommodate a minimum of 110% of the capacity of the inner tank. This ensures that any fuel spillage is safely and securely contained within the bund, thereby averting a potential pollution incident.

In the UK, bunded tanks are increasingly manufactured from plastic, although metal tanks remain available – and are particularly popular at larger installations.

Alternatively, it is possible to retrofit a bund at existing installations, via the construction of a masonry bund wall around an existing storage tank. The new regulations also extend far beyond the storage tank, detailing requirements for ancillary and auxiliary fittings e.g. fuel dispensing nozzles, gauging systems, isolation valves etc.

The implementation of the regulations has been phased. With effect from 1st. April 2001, all new installations at affected premises have had to comply with the regulations. And more recently, all ‘at risk’ installations have had to be made compliant with effect from 1st. September 2003. An installation is deemed to be ‘at risk’ if it's situated in close proximity to an environmentally sensitive area or could constitute an environmental hazard. All remaining fuel stores must comply by 1st. September 2005.

Even the smallest spillage can result in a court appearance, heavy fines, significant remediation costs and substantial legal expenses. In recognition of this, many property owners decided to upgrade their installations ahead of the deadlines set by the regulations. And with environmental authorities increasingly adopting a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to non-compliant installations, ignoring the Regulations will prove to be an expensive mistake.

For more information on  2001 Oil Storage Regs Site Compliance Audit  talk to  Andel Ltd

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