Oregon Tankline Bulletin

August 28th, 2014

oregon-deq-hillsboroThe Oregon DEQ has a great e-newsletter Tankline Bulletin that’s worth signing up for. It’s free and packed with some great information. Even if you’re not in Oregon there are some excellent compliance tips on things like interstitial monitoring, biofuels, CP testing and more.

Here’s the current copy.

Here’s how to sign up.

Spotlight: Tribal UST Programs

August 27th, 2014

IMG_1366If you’re not associated with an Indian Tribe, you may not be aware that UST systems within Indian country are subject to Federal and not state UST regulations. A few tribes like the Navajo Nation have their own UST regulations but most tribes rely on Federal law 40 CFR 280 as a framework to guide their UST programs. (more…)

Assessing Underground Storage Tanks for Earthquake Damage

August 27th, 2014

From the California SWRCB UST Program August 25, 2014. Important steps if your UST site experiences an earthquake.

In light of the August 24, 2014 earthquake in Napa,  State Water Board staff have prepared the attached document for guidance on steps to assess underground storage tanks for earthquake damage. (more…)

Live Custom Class A/B UST Operator Training Available

August 20th, 2014

IMG_6402Interested in Class A/B UST training but want something a bit more company-specific? Ben Thomas of UST Training can provide customized training at your company’s office or, even better, out at your UST site. Ben can help you integrate generic Class A/B operator training content with company equipment and standards to create a hands on learning environment that is interactive, relevant and memorable.

Classes can include:

  • Class A/B UST operator (certain states)
  • Custom Class C emergency response training
  • Advanced UST operator training (components, record keeping, alarm response)
  • Understanding automatic tank gauges
  • Daily, monthly and annual inspections

Want to learn more? Contact Ben at 866-301-8265 or email at


UST Training Can Be Fun, Honest!

August 20th, 2014

(Republished from Coggno on July 11, 2014)


This week we’ve unleashed our Q&A on Ben Thomas, a man with over 25 years of experience in the underground storage tank industry. Ben got his start after the Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska in 1989, working as an intern when the industry was in its infancy. In the years since, Ben became one of the “founding fathers” of modern UST training, making great strides in helping new employees learn the ropes through in-person and online training. Ben was kind enough to answer a few questions about his UST online training courses. Take it away, Ben…

1. Tell us a little about your UST background.

In 1986 I got a job inspecting tank removals in Vermont. Federal tank regulations were still a few years away so it was a very frontier-style of environmental protection. But I got some great field experience before I moved to Alaska to complete my college degree. Weirdly, it was the Exxon Valdez in 1989 that got me into a permanent tanks job; everyone in the Fairbanks office responded to the big spill and I stayed behind. As a college intern, I started working the fledgling UST program. I helped guide Alaska through the big 1998 upgrade deadline and decided to start my own business in Washington state in 2002.

2. When did you begin teaching / creating UST courses?


The next big concern with today’s UST systems: ethanol

August 8th, 2014

Based on some reports as well as personal eye witness accounts. we’ve seen an increase of corrosion being caused by the introduction of ethanol into the nation’s gasoline and stored in underground storage tanks. The National Institute of Standards and Technology recently published this article highlighting the problem.

NIST Corrosion Lab Tests Suggest Need for Underground Gas Tank Retrofits (more…)

Reflections from EPA’s UST Director on the 2005 Energy Policy Act

August 8th, 2014

Here’s an email we just received from the nation’s top UST regulator on the 9 year anniversary of the Energy Policy Act. Kudos for all the cooperation between inspectors and operators over the years!


carolyn_hoskinsonAugust 8, 2014

Dearest UST colleagues -

Four Score and 7 years ago…. Oh, actually I mean 9 years ago today President Bush signed the Energy Policy Act of 2005 giving new authorities and new mandates to the Underground Storage Tanks program.  What a rollercoaster ride the past 9 years have been! (more…)

Hurricanes and UST System Safety

August 6th, 2014

Hurricane JulioAloha! UST operators in Hawai’i are bracing for some serious weather as Hurricane Julio bears down on the Islands. Here’s a helpful document to get your UST system ready for a hurricane.  Thanks to EPA for this useful publication, which covers preventing impacts due to buoyancy (tank floating) erosion and scour (backfill being damaged), product displacement (water in, forcing fuel out) and electrical system damage. Be safe out there!