With winter virtually here you may be thinking of (if not already) switching on the heating, however those of you with oil tanks are being urged by the Environment Agency to check the tanks carefully before filling, in case of any deterioration over the summer months.
Damaged pipework or tanks could potentially end up costing thousands of pounds if they were to leak, not to mention the disruption. Householders could also face prosecution and substantial fines if the leak was to pollute local areas such as streams, rivers etc.
If you use oil for home heating you need to be aware of your risks and responsibilities – homeowners must comply with The Control of Pollution (Oil Storage) (England) Regulations.
Following this simple advice could help avoid most incidents;-
- Inspect your tank, ancillary equipment and pipework regularly for corrosion, damage, interference and signs of leaks especially steel tanks.
- Use an OFTEC registered technician to service and inspect your boiler, tank, ancillary equipment and all pipework at least once a year.
- Always supervise your oil delivery – discuss delivery procedures with your fuel company and check that they are happy with your tank etc from a health, safety and pollution aspect.
- Check your home insurance policy and ensure you are covered for loss of oil or pollution cleanup costs, it may also be worth installing additional security devices like a locking fill cap.
- Have an oil spill kit with absorbent materials to hand, drain blockers and leak sealing putty will also help you deal with a spill or leak.
If you need to report any incidents of oil pollution call the Environment Agency free on their 24 hour hotline 0800 807060.