With the news of a chemical spill in West Virginia earlier this year that left hundreds of thousands without safe drinking water, storage tank safety and regulations have received significant attention in 2014. Not just in West Virginia, but all across the nation, states are looking at ways to improve the safety of their storage tanks with new regulations and education. In California, the RUST program received an extension in order to continue the process of replacing old, leaking storage tanks. In Michigan, the Underground Storage Tank Financial Assurance Fund is receiving more funding after a long period of reduced activity. In West Virginia, new legislation is taking effect to drastically improve storage tank safety standards in the state.
In Virginia, a new program through the state’s Department of Environmental Quality is hoping to educate storage tank owners and operators on safety and regulations in order to increase public awareness of proper storage tank maintenance. From the DEQ’s website:
TurboTank is DEQ’s online Self Certification System for regulated underground storage tanks (USTs). There are approximately 18,000 active USTs at about 6,000 UST facilities in Virginia. Turbotank is designed for the owners and operators of regulated UST facilities in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Turbotank is a helpful tool to assist you, as a UST owner or operator, in learning about UST pollution prevention requirements as they may pertain to your particular UST facility. The UST Program seeks to prevent USTs from leaking by asking owners to maintain tank spill prevention, tank overfill protection, corrosion protection on tanks and piping, release detection for tanks and piping, operator training certification, and financial responsibility.