A petroleum distributor failed to file reports to help firefighters and emergency responders in Pasco and other communities understand what hazards they might face if called to a fire or other emergency at its plants, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Christensen Inc., of Grandview, agreed to pay a $65,670 fine and to install storage tank alarm systems across three states to settle the issue, the agency said.
The company bills itself as the largest wholesale petroleum fuel distributor in the Northwest.
For several years, it did not provide emergency planning information at five facilities from Toppenish to Pasco and a sixth facility in Seattle, the EPA said.
It stores hundreds of thousands of gallons of diesel fuel, gasoline, LPG–propane, motor oils and other hazardous chemicals at the six facilities, the EPA said.
In Pasco, it has a plant at 151 Commercial Avenue. It also has a plant at 501 E. Wine Country Road in Grandview and a facility at Mid Valley Car Dealership at 501 Stover Road in Grandview.
The other facilities that allegedly did not meet emergency planning requirements were in Yakima, Toppenish and Seattle.
As part of a settlement agreement, Christensen will install high-tech, web-based monitoring systems on at least 180 underground storage tanks owned by its customers in Washington state and parts of Idaho and Oregon.
The systems will use state-of-the-art leak detection technology to send data from individual tanks to a central management system. Instant notification will be provided if there is a potential leak or leak from a tank.
Leaking underground storage tanks release fuel or other petroleum products that can contaminate soil, groundwater and streams and rivers. Early leak detection helps minimize harm to the environment and prevents costly cleanups.
The schedule in the consent agreement calls for some of the monitoring system to be installed by September, and all to be installed by August 2018.