Archive

Jet fuel supplier fined for Heathrow groundwater pollution

  • admin
  • 2010-11-22 15:16:26
  • 0 comments
November 2010 A London company responsible for supplying jet fuel at Heathrow Airport was fined £40,000 and ordered to pay the Environment Agency in excess of £14,000 for its costs, after severely polluting groundwater beneath the airport, with at least 139,000 litres of Jet A-1 aviation fuel. It is not known how long the leak had been going on for or the total volume of fuel lost. A £7 million automated leak detection system had been malfunctioning for at least five months prior to the incident, and had not detected the leak. The company did not put a manual testing system in place despite knowing that the automated system was not working properly. A specialist remediation company has been contracted by the jet fuel supplier to recover fuel and remediate the affected area. As at June 2010 139,391 litres have been recovered and was being recovered at a rate of 80—100 litres per week. The cost of remediation to date is approximately £1 million!

Insulation Firm fined £12,000 after washing spilt oil down the drains.

  • admin
  • 2010-11-22 15:05:57
  • 0 comments
November 2010 An insulation firm has been fined after letting accidently spilt oil pour down a drain, through the Barbourne Brook at Gheluvelt Park and in to the River Severn. The pond at Gheluvelt Park is home to a pair of swans and a large population of ducks, many of which were coated in oil. The company was fined a total of £12,000 and ordered to pay costs of £5,563.53 plus a £15 victim fine. For the Environment Agency, Sheila Abrahams told the court on November 14 the agency received calls about oil on the Barbourne Brook. The source was traced to an outfall at Northbrook Close in Barbourne where the EA discovered staining on the yard of the group's premises and on the road, consistent with someone washing down oil into the drains. They found three road gullies containing substantial amounts of oil. The company claimed its employees unwittingly passed a redundant oil tank to some individuals who they presumed were from a company asked to pick up the tank. The unidentified individuals dropped the tank while trying to load it on to a lorry, resulting in the oil spill, but there was no spill clean-up equipment on site.

Fuel distributor fined £5000

  • admin
  • 2010-11-22 14:42:33
  • 0 comments
October 2010 A company has been fined £5,000 and ordered to pay £3,700 costs after polluting a tributary of the River Clyst near Dart Business Park, Clyst St George, near Exeter, Devon, with red diesel. On 24 July, 2009, a significant quantity of red diesel was seen in the watercourse. Booms and pads were put across the tributary to contain the pollution and the Environment Agency used more than 100 filled sandbags for construction of a weir to contain diesel. Although further investigation traced the leak to the fuel distributor's site, the company was not showing any loss of oil on their computer system. However, a pressure test and ground excavation revealed a hole in a supply pipe to a fuel dispensing island. A quantity of oil entered the watercourse but the majority was contained in a 100 metre section. The River Clyst is a SSSI (site of special scientific interest), a SPA (special protection area) and a RAMSAR site (a wetland site with international importance). The magistrates court recognised the work undertaken by the company to remediate the environmental impact of the spillage. 'We believe that 22,000 litres of red diesel had been lost to the ground near the fuel island. An accurate fuel measuring system within storage tanks and leak detection on pipe work would have alerted the company early on and avoided a major oil spill,' said Mischka Hewins for the Environment Agency.

Transport Company fined £6,867 over oil spill

  • admin
  • 2010-11-22 14:37:21
  • 0 comments
September 2010 A haulage firm has been ordered to pay £6,867 after an oil spill at its vehicle maintenance yard caused "significant damage to local wildlife". The company was fined £4,000 and ordered to pay £2,852 costs, plus a £15 victim surcharge. On 14 July 2008, members of the public informed EA officers that a large amount of oil could be seen on the Thames. It was discovered that the oil was entering the river from a surface water sewer at Westfield Landing in Kingston. However, the source of the pollution was traced to a vehicle maintenance facility in Lower Marsh Lane, Kingston. Peter Ehmann, EA officer, found that an oil interceptor at the yard, designed to stop small spillages from leaving the premises, was so full of oil that it could not function properly. This had caused thick black waste engine oil to run into the surface-water sewer system, which was in turn linked directly to the outfall at Westfield Landing. The transport company admitted in court that it had failed to empty the interceptor, which meant it had failed to operate properly. About 40 swans were affected by oil and some had to be rescued by the Swan Sanctuary in Shepperton, Surrey. Ehmann says the incident resulted in "significant damage to local wildlife and the general area". He adds: "Although a number of swans had to be rescued and cared for by the local swan sanctuary, it was fortunate that the pollution didn't result in any fish mortality. "Irresponsible handling of oil and disposing of oil down drains is totally unacceptable and we are pleased that the court has recognised this."

Summary of recent pollution events

  • admin
  • 2010-11-22 14:10:33
  • 0 comments
Feb 2009; forklift truck repair site fined £8,000 and ordered to pay costs of £4,000 after red diesel leaked into Hammond Beck at Donington. May 2009; plant hire company fined £12,000 and ordered to pay costs over £1,500 for an oil leak which polluted the River Calder. The firm estimated that it also cost them over £12,000 to clean up the spill... June 2009; oil and paint fly tipping cause the death of hundreds of trout in Skelton Beck. June 2010; vandals caused 2000litres of oil to spill from a tank into the River Almond in West Lothian. August 2010; Utility company fined over £12,000 when an interceptor failed to prevent an oil spill polluting the River Thames. The company also spent arund £97,000 remediating the environmental damage! August 2010; fuel leaked from a hole in the petrol storage tank of a filling station in Cambridge, leading to £10,000 in fines and £5,000 in costs.

Introduction to the "Incident Update" area of the website

  • admin
  • 2010-11-22 12:55:22
  • 0 comments
This area of the website will be regularily updated with details of environmental incidents, prosecutions by the Environment Agency and the resultant fines and costs incurred. Most of these incidents could have been mitigated by installation and use of the Multisensor MS1000/1100 VOC monitors. The Multisensor system could have alerted either the pollutor or the monitoring agency to the event as soon as the pollutant entered the drainage system or water channel, thereby allowing for immediate containment of the leak and greatly reducing the environmental impact of the incident. Please note: This is not intended to be an exhaustive list. Names of guilty parties have been omitted, however all information published here is in the public domain and can easily be found elsewhere.

Multisensor and Cummins work to protect the environment against fuel spillage

  • admin
  • 2010-11-19 12:10:29
  • 0 comments
Manchester, UK – 19thNovember 2010 - Multisensor Systems Ltd and global diesel engine manufacturer Cummins Engineering Company have announced the deployment of a new system to protect against accidental spillage of diesel fuel at Cummins’ Darlington engine test facility. The system which provides automatic detection and containment of any spillage is based upon Multisensor’s MS1000 Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) detection instrument, which uses Multisensor’s advanced sensor technology. Cummins has implemented the system as part of their wider environmental protection process, a company-wide commitment to be a leader in the industrial community and provide the highest level of protection to the local environment. The MS1000 range provides for the detection of VOCs and Hydrocarbons to parts per billion concentrations. This means that any VOC can be detected much earlier than other instruments are capable of, thus making sure that the highest level of protection of plant, equipment, customers and the environment is provided. Paul Malpass Technical Specialist at Cummins’ engine test facility said “The new emergency spillage containment system using Multisensor’s VOC detection instrument provides the security which Cummins demands to protect the local environment and infrastructure to the highest level.” Brad Weaterton, CEO of Multisensor added “Cummins’ application is ideal for our product which combines the highest performance levels with immediate reporting of any discharge of fuel and a low cost of ownership” The MS1000 provides an alarm function to signal a high VOC concentration event, with programmable alarm threshold levels for adjustment to the application in which it is being used. Similarly the sensitivity can be controlled to tune the operation to the environment. The instrument adjusts automatically to variations in the background environment and to sensor and circuit drift. The Cummins system uses the 4 – 20mA isolated loop output for integration into a central control and security system and also generates audio and visual alarms locally.

CONTACT US
Multisensor Systems Ltd

Alexandra Court
Carrs Road
Cheadle
SK8 2JY
United Kingdom