Incidents of oil pollution can be very serious because they can cause environmental damage through the pollution of rivers and groundwaters, threatening fish and other aquatic life. They can cause harm to human health by the release of vapours and can pollute drinking water supplies and cause structural damage.
It's your responsibility to keep your domestic oil storage tank safe. Oil leaks can cause damage to property and the environment. Prolonged exposure to vapours could cause harm to health. It could cost you thousands of pounds and take months or years to clean up an oil spillage and there is a risk of prosecutions and fines.
To prevent problems from occurring make sure your whole system is regularly checked and serviced by professionally qualified, competent engineers.
Don't put it off - check your oil heater today.
Are there any visible leaks or stains? Are there any cracks or damage to the tank, pipes, sight gauges or the support system? Is your tank old or in poor condition? If any of these apply, get advice from a qualified and experienced engineer as soon as possible. If repair or replacement is required, do not attempt to do this yourself.
Cut back any plants which are growing near or over the tank, as they could damage it.
Make sure that any deliveries of oil can be made safely and supervise them whenever possible.
Do what you can to prevent vandalism or theft, but do not make any changes that would affect how your system works.
Some policies will only cover you for the cost of replacing lost oil, not for any clean up. Most companies will not cover you at all if a leak is caused by lack of maintenance.
There are several warning signs that you may have an oil leak.
If you suspect an oil leak, follow these steps:
Have a basic spill kit ready (see the guide for details), but don't put yourself in any danger trying to stop or clean up a spill. Keep a copy of emergency telephone numbers handy - or obtain a sticker for your tank from the Environment Agency by telephoning their National Customer Contact Centre on 03708 506 506
We cannot clean up any oil that is spilt, or undertake any repairs for you but we may be able to help you find someone to clean up the oil, and to ensure that this is done to the correct standards.
Failure to properly address a significant oil spill could lead to one or more of the following:
Advice about any oil spills affecting the Port of Bridgwater can be found at Port Management Plans and Risk Assessments .
If you are concerned that oil has leaked on to land, you can contact us on the number below or online here: Report an oil spill
Please note oil pollution of a ditch, rhyne or watercourse should be reported to the Environment Agency incident line on 0800 80 70 60.