Underground storage tanks
A clarification regarding abandonment in place
NOVEMBER 14 2 0 0 3
w w w. r e a l t o r l i n k . c a
My October 3, 2003 column focused on what realtors need to know about underground storage tanks. In it I posed the following situation to the City of Vancouver Fire & Rescue Services.
A property contains an underground storage
tank, decommissioned 10 years ago in compliance with the law at that
time, which required homeowners to remove contents and fill with sand.
What is the position now on this tank? We were told that the tank
must meet current bylaw requirements, which means it must be removed. Since
then weve received a clarification. The City of Vancouver, Fire
by-law no. 8191 (sec. 4.10.3) and the Sewer and Watercourse bylaw
no. 8093 (sec. 5.3) both require that tanks out of service for two
years or not being reused, must be removed. But there are exceptions.
Doug Roberts, Manager, Environmental Protection Branch, Fire &
Rescue Services, explains Fire By-Law section 220.127.116.11 Abandonment in
Where the Fire Chief determines that it is impractical to remove an
underground storage tank, such tank shall be filled with an inert
Where the Fire Chief determines that it is impractical to remove
underground piping, such piping shall have the ends permanently sealed
by capping or plugging.
procedure on issuing abandonment in place permits is:
it is deemed impractical by the Fire Chief to remove an underground
storage tank, the owner may apply to the Fire Chief for permission to
abandon the tank in place. These include situations where the storage
following steps must be taken to decommission a storage tank:
the REBGV homepage on RealtorLink.ca under government relations
issues underground storage tanks, or contact: John Poole,
Lieutenant, Fire & Rescue Services, City of Vancouver. 604-873-7593
or Doug Roberts, Manager, Environmental Protection Branch, 604-873-7567.