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Are you compliant with the EPA's underground storage tank rules?

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In December we talked about the new underground storage tank rules.

But what does that mean for you? If you're compliant or have a compliance plan you’re actively working through, then it likely means business as usual. However, if you aren't or you don't, it can mean a visit from the EPA, as nine stations recently discovered.

In February 2016 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued fines ranging from $3,400 to over $13,000 to four stations in Alaska, three stations in Oregon, and two in Washington State. The nine stations have been penalized several times due to repeated violations resulting in the current fines totaling almost $60,000. The regulations require measures such as maintaining a line leak detector system, which five of the nine stations did not have, and regular line tests. Other stations failed to provide adequate release detection methods for their tanks, and two stations, one in Oregon and the other in Washington, caused petroleum releases on their properties by failing to monitor their tanks and piping. One of the Washington State stations has been prohibited from receiving fuel deliveries until they are in compliance.

In a press release, EPA's Seattle groundwater unit manager Peter Contreras said: "Underground fuel tank owners and operators must be knowledgeable and safely operate their systems to prevent harmful releases. Repeat violators will face stiffer penalties, and may be blocked from receiving fuel shipments.”

Leak detection is a serious issue on many levels. In addition to the environmental compliance requirements, a leak can also mean station downtime, fire or explosion hazards, expensive cleanups, and possible fines, all of which add up to lost profits and loss of reputation in your community. As those nine stations discovered, even delaying required testing can be costly with a track record of repeat violations. Shields Harper's professionals will provide you with the right equipment, the right monitoring, and the right support to make sure you are compliant.

With the second phase of the new EPA requirements taking effect in April 2016, Shields Harper will help you identify and meet the new state and federal requirements for your locations. With industry leading suppliers like Franklin Fuel ManagementOPW Tank GaugingVeeder Root and Verifone, Shields Harper can help you stay on top of your inventories with the right testing and monitoring equipment. From detection and remote control to reconciliation and loss prevention, our suppliers can handle the environmental compliance details for you.

Contact your Shields Harper representative and discuss your compliance plan.