Let’s face it, sometimes regulations seem to get in the way of us just getting a job done, am I right? While spill containment may feel like one of those unnecessary burdens when setting up equipment or starting work, there are many good reasons to view it as a critical element. For our purposes, spill containment will encompass any temporary spill berm or spill tray designed to catch any potential spill or release of chemicals, oils, sewage, or other harmful liquid to prevent them from reaching the soil or groundwater.
In fact, spills have become such a hazard from recent events that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) now heavily regulates how spills are to be prevented, controlled, and prepared for. Failure to obey these Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) laws can have very significant negative effects on your business.
Depending on the environment or worksite, spill containment can take many forms and involve many processes to ensure compliance and full safety. For example, when setting a frac tank on site near an oil rig, a simple spill containment berm set on the ground is often sufficient to prevent spills. However, if you are transferring fuel from a tanker at sea, spill booms and other products will need to be utilized in the water and spill trays on the vessel will need to be erected to prevent a potential disaster.
We’ve identified five (5) of the most common challenges most people try to avoid by NOT utilizing spill containment. But there are solutions that will meet your needs, prevent interruptions to your business, and not cost you much time or money.
#1 - Compliance
Both OSHA and the EPA have defined many safe operating guidelines and compliance regulations regarding spill containment and secondary containment to prevent contamination to soil and groundwater. The main regulations for most industrial spill containment concerns can be found in EPA 40 CFR 264.175, which lays out 3 basic requirements that must be met: The containment must underlie the container and be in good operating condition, it must be sloped so leaked liquids can be removed, and the berm capacity must sufficiently contain at least 10% of the largest container within.
Obviously, there are many possible products on the market today that can meet these requirements, but often they are difficult to handle, are very costly, or do not meet every aspect of the compliance regulations. PacTec’s BermPac® spill containment berms satisfy all of these. Depending on the type of work you are doing, the terrain, the equipment or containers being placed in the berm and more will help you determine which sidewall type and material choice will best suit your needs. PacTec offers many different styles from small, basic, and very inexpensive - to robust, extreme condition solutions. Our experts can help you determine which will meet your budget and jobsite requirements.
#2 - Environmental Fines
The federal government takes environmental protection seriously and imposes significant fines and even criminal charges against companies and individuals found to be intentionally or accidentally violating the law, depending on the incident. Do not put yourself in a position to face jailtime or up to $25,000/day in negligence fines simply by ignoring the need for proper spill containment. The risk is seldom worth it.
Instead, utilize PacTec’s experts to assist you in evaluating various spill containment solutions that will meet your needs. The proper solution will not only meet your budget guidelines, but will be manufactured to ensure compliance, be easy to install, and built for the terrain in which it will be used.
#3 - Project Delays
Ever fear project delays, or been incentivized to finish on-time or early? Do not let an unforeseen spill cause you to lose sleep or financial bonuses. Spills are costly, time consuming, and a major pain, often resulting in your company losing future opportunities by being labeled as “negligent.” Avoid this by simply planning to incorporate proper spill containment in every applicable project. PacTec keeps many common sizes and sidewall configurations in inventory for immediate delivery, plus most equipment rental companies now offer them as well, so availability should not be a factor.
Avoiding project delays is a critical concern in normal business operations as well. Imagine holding up your crew, equipment, and payments because of a spill. That can quickly snowball into loss of future projects, staff, and financial resources. Spill berms can be your little hero in hiding if you just give them a chance.
#4 - Achieving a Healthy ROI
Still not convinced spill containment equipment benefits you? What if it cost just pennies on the dollar in the long run? It’s true! By utilizing the proper materials and configurations, spill berms can last for many uses, in many different terrains, and handle a variety of chemicals that may spill into them. Plus, PacTec offers many affordable accessories that can help extend the life of your spill trays, so you buy less frequently. Those include ground cover to prevent punctures from rough terrain, rubber track matting to protect against tire damage, hose bridges to keep sidewalls clear from hose/cable weight, and many more.
Plus, for equipment rental companies, containment berms are quickly becoming a revenue stream for many branches. Built to last, they can be rented with equipment several times over, providing a healthy return on investment.
#5 - Meeting Site-Specific Needs
Not all berms are built equally, just as all jobsites are not consistent in their requirements. Fret not, as PacTec is a custom manufacturer and can design and fabricate a spill containment solution to meet those site-specific demands. For example, we have built berms to form fit over train tracks for companies needing to prevent potential spills while doing work on railcars. We have also made floating oil spill containment berms for oil tanker work being done at sea.
Plus, PacTec has been building products and solutions for over 30 years, and with over 20 patents to our credit, we are proud of our reputation as innovators. At the same time, not all sites are particular, so you can also take advantage of our wide variety of in-stock containment solutions – of various sizes, configurations, and materials.
We understand the challenges that utilizing spill containment can present, which is why we have worked to minimize those concerns. PacTec has innovated easier-to-use spill berm brackets, commissioned custom materials that are stronger and lighter weight than alternatives on the market, and built a team to assist you along the way. Not utilizing spill berms in your operations because of seemingly large obstacles is no longer a strong case against environmental fines or job downtime.
Do yourself a favor and look into today’s spill containment BermPac® options, and we trust you will find one that meets both your jobsite and budget needs.