MOTs proposed for oil tanks

Hundreds of oil spills could be prevented if all commercial oil tanks over 200 litres had the equivalent of a regular MOT, according to a report from the Environmental Industries Commission.1

The EIC says the 2001 oil storage regulations that set spill prevention standards for commercial oil storage have cut pollution incidents. But the Environment Agency does not routinely inspect tanks to ensure compliance.

In 2006, tank failures or overfilling led to 398 pollution incidents. But the Agency says three quarters of incidents go unreported, so the real number could be over 1,000.

The EIC proposes that installers give new oil tanks a certificate confirming they comply with the rules. A test would be required at regular intervals. Existing tanks would need to be tested within 18 months of the scheme’s implementation.

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