With many areas of the country under water, OFTEC, the Oil Firing Technical Association, is alerting rural home owners using home heating oil to a potential problem caused by extreme weather conditions. In some cases, central heating oil tanks may be at risk of becoming buoyant in floodwater and floating away, leaking oil and causing widespread pollution in the process.
A further risk is from high winds which can also dislodge a tank and break the supply line. Tanks most susceptible are free-standing plastic tanks with a low level of oil. Any oil tanks in areas prone to flooding should be secured firmly to their base by strapping. Homeowners are advised to have an OFTEC registered technician review their tank installation by visiting the OFTEC website.
Malcolm Farrow, of OFTEC, said: “Although there is normally a very small risk of this happening, unfortunately it can cause a lot of disruption. In light of current flooding and high winds we want to remind people to think about securing their oil tanks to prevent any problems.
“An oil leak is bad news for the environment, and is quite literally money down the drain. It’s really important if you think your tank might be at risk to call a qualified technician straight away for advice on how best to secure your tank.”