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Toxics Cleanup Program

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UNDERGROUND STORAGE TANKS (USTs)*

Laws and Rules Just the Forms 
New Owner or Tank Heating Oil Tanks
USTs Out of Service Web Information
Inspections Report a Spill
Service Providers / UST Checklists   Flood Information
Draft List of Certified UST Service Providers UST Publications
Training (UST Operator) Additional Links

Overview of Program

Washington State has a federally-approved state Underground Storage Tank (UST) program.  This means that state law, not federal law, applies to UST systems in this state.
 
Under state law, the Department of Ecology (Ecology) currently regulates more than 9,500 tanks at more than 3,600 facilities, including gas stations, industries, commercial properties, and governmental entities.  Ecology works to ensure these tanks are installed, managed, and monitored in a manner that prevents releases into the environment.  To do so, Ecology conducts compliance inspections at about 800 facilities each year (most facilities have multiple tanks) and provides technical assistance to tank owners.

Changes to UST Regulations

On August 8, 2012, the Department of Ecology (Ecology) adopted changes to Chapter 173-360 WAC, Underground Storage Tank Regulations. The changes will be published in the Washington State Register on September 5, 2012, and become effective on October 1, 2012  (view the regulation).

The changes:

  • Authorize Ecology to stop regulated substances from being delivered to UST systems that do not comply with regulatory requirements.  (see Focus on Delivery Prohibition)

  • Establish an operator training program for individuals who operate and maintain UST systems.  Current operators must be trained by December 31, 2012.  (see Focus on Operator Training)

  • Require emergency response signage at all UST facilities.   (see Focus on Emergency Signage)

  • Require secondary containment and interstitial monitoring of tanks and pipes installed or replaced after October 1, 2012.  (see Focus on Secondary Containment)

  • Require containment under dispenser systems if the dispenser, dispenser system, or underground piping connected to the dispenser system is installed or replaced after October 1, 2012.   (see Focus on Secondary Containment)

To learn more about the changes and get copies of the adopted rule amendments, click here.

Compliance with New Operator Training Requirements

Under the adopted rule amendments, operators must be trained by December 31, 2012.  To learn more about operator training requirements and training opportunities, click here.


American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

Overview of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and Leaking Underground Storage Tank Sites in Washington State... (more

 

Underground Storage Tank Compliance Act of 2005

In 2005, Congress passed the Energy Policy Act.  Title XV, Subtitle B of this act (titled the Underground Storage Tank Compliance Act) contains amendments to Subtitle I of the Solid Waste Disposal Act, the original legislation that created the federal UST program.  The Act requires state UST programs receiving federal funding to comply with new federal requirements, including:

  • Conducting more frequent compliance inspections.

  • Implementing a delivery prohibition process.

  • Developing an operator training program.

  • Requiring secondary containment for new or replaced tanks and pipes.

  • Requiring containment under new or replaced dispenser systems.

  • Providing reports to EPA and the public (see below).

To learn more about these new federal requirements, see www.epa.gov/oust/fedlaws/epact_05.htm.
 
Public Record- Sources and Causes of UST releases in Washington State for Federal Fiscal Year 2013 (October1, 2012 to September 30, 2013).

* Always check with your local environmental authority as they may have regulations for activities regarding USTs, Oil Water Separator Maintenance and Rules.


Photo:  Tank removal

Contacts

UST Staff

UST Hotline:
1-800-826-7716

E-mail:  tanks@ecy.wa.gov

Participating Programs and Agencies

Regional Map