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Label Your Aboveground Storage Tanks, Says DEP

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Bill Hughes

West Virginia’s Department of Environmental Protection is encouraging aboveground storage tank owners to comply with a new law and label their tanks.

The amended Aboveground Storage Tank Act, passed by the state Legislature on March 14, requires each aboveground storage tank be labeled with a registration number, the emergency contact telephone number for the owner or operator of the tank and the telephone number for the DEP’s Spill Reporting Hotline (1-800-642-3074).

About 51,000 aboveground tanks (ASTs) are already registered throughout the state. Some, including agriculture and water tanks, will be de-registered under the new rule, but all tanks that are in zones of critical concern, or are of certain sizes, or contain certain dangerous substances are expected to register with the DEP by July 1st. Tank owners are also required to display their registration number, as well as the other identifying information, in a way that is clearly visible from public roadways or public right-of-ways outside the tanks’ containment areas.

DEP expects about 12,000 tanks will be regulated as either Level 1 or Level 2 tanks in “zones of concern,” or upstream from public drinking water intakes. About 5,300 tanks are considered Level 1 AST’s, because of their size, location near those intakes, and/or contents. DEP is still mapping Level 2 areas, but expects 5 ,000 - 7,000 tanks exist in those areas.


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