If a tank or pipeline that carries oil, leaks and allows oil to enter the groundwater system it is deemed that there has been a criminal offence. If the site cannot prove that the tanks / pipelines have been regularly pressure tested and checked by a competent person recognised by the Environment Agency (“EA”) or Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (“SEPA”), they will prosecute.
In order to comply with EA, SEPA, DEFRA and HSE regulations, oil tanks and pipelines must have an annual inspection by a company with a recognised accreditation. Our engineers are OFTEC (oil industry equivalent of GasSafe) OFT600a (Non-Domestic Oil Tank Installations) approved technicians. This is the only qualification that The EA recognises. We have been inspecting and maintaining the sites in this case study for 8 years. We perform pressure tests and thickness checks on tanks, pipework and pumping systems to ensure that they are tight and leak free.
The previous service provider maintained the generators on the sites and performed complimentary inspections on the oil tanks and pumps as part of generator servicing. A new FM company took over the site contract and we were their nominated specialist.
Their customer was looking into dispensing with the specialist inspections provided by us and opting for the complimentary inspections to reduce costs.
Due to our relationship with on-site personnel and our recognised expertise we were asked to do a first inspection on all the bank’s sites before a decision was made.
On one of the very first sites we inspected we found a pipeline with several large holes in a line taking fuel from an underground tank into the generator’s day tank. The site had been having difficulty getting fuel from the underground tank to the day tank. The company that maintained the generators had supplied and fitted a new transfer pump system, believing that to be the cause of the problem. They had not identified that the line was leaking and that therefore, the pumps were sucking air instead of oil, meaning that oil was escaping underground!
As part of our annual inspections we pressure test all pipework. We failed the underground pipeline, immediately removing it and replacing it with a polypropylene pipe in pipe system (KPS).
In order to comply with EA, SEPA, DEFRA and HSE regulations, oil tanks and pipelines must have an annual inspection by a company with a recognised accreditation.
- Over 100 sites
- Varying from locations
- Installations go from a single 50lt tank, up to sites with over 500,000lts of gas oil on site permanently
- Avoid prosecution and an unlimited fi ne if oil leaks off site
- Avoid potentially massive clean-up costs
- Ensure backup generators have fuel when needed
- Avoid or minimise the environmental consequences of oil spillage
- Avoids the potential bad press / public relations if oil contamination occurs
Nationwide from The Midlands through to the Orkney & Shetland Islands.