There are 2,200 terminal facilities globally and they form more than 3.2 billion gallons of storage tank volume when combined. Experts in the industry know that tank leaks occur when you least expect them. To prevent leaks caused by crack welds surrounding the nozzles and disastrous bottom fiascos, an authorized third party must inspect these tanks.
This is not only an ideal solution; several federal, state, and local agencies control assessments of above ground storage tanks. When taking a tank out of service, several steps are taken to perform an assessment.
The primary step should involve developing a decommissioning plan. When arranging a tank for assessment, safety must be the top priority. This plan should guarantee that the inspectors incorporate steps to form a safe working atmosphere, look after assets, and avert spills. The decommissioning plan has to be distinct for every tank because it has to consider the features of the contents. The product inside could be combustible, flammable, heavy, or light.
Here are the steps to take when draining a tank, releasing it from residual vapors, and conducting an assessment:
- Remove contents in drain pipeline or tank;
- Separate the tank.
- Perform atmospheric assessment inside the tank.
- Clean the tank and release vapor.
- Manage waste.
- Reassess for the presence of concealed vapor inside the tank.
- Inspect or scan the bottom of the tank, its walls, and welds surrounding nozzles and man-ways.
- Perform mechanical repairs, if needed.
- Inspect mechanical repairs.
- Re-commission the tank.
Just because your tank is not physically leaking does not mean there is nothing to worry about. It may cost a lot to take a tank out of service for assessment, but you should think of it as insurance. The cost associated with conducting routine tank assessments is nothing compared to the expenses you would incur if the tank leaks.