Begin Main Content Area

2018 Revisions to Pennsylvania's Storage Tank Regulations

StorageTankIllustrationWeb.pngThe DEP Division of Storage Tanks published revisions to storage tank regulations (25 Pa. Code, Chapter 245) on December 22, 2018. Here you'll find a summary of the changes, new and updated forms, and helpful information about the revisions to assist in maintaining regulatory compliance, including a printable brochure. If you have any questions, please contact the DEP Division of Storage Tanks at 1-800-42-TANKS (toll-free in PA) or 717-772-5599 (local and out-of-state) or by email at ra-tanks@pa.gov.

New and Updated Forms

Underground Storage Tank Testing Forms

Inspection Forms

Release Reporting Form

Educational Material

Summary of Regulatory Changes

Expand AllClick here for a more accessible version
Subchapter A: General Provisions

Defined Aboveground Storage Tank System as, "An aboveground storage tank, connected piping and ancillary equipment within the emergency containment area, and emergency and secondary containment."

245.1

Defined Containment Sump as, "A liquid-tight container designed to protect the environment by containing leaks and spills of regulated substances from piping, dispensers, pumps and related components in the containment area. Containment sumps may be single-walled or secondarily contained and located at the top of the tank (tank top or submersible turbine pump sump), underneath the dispenser (under-dispenser containment sump), or at other points in the piping run (transition or intermediate sump)."

245.1

Defined Environmental Covenant as, "A servitude arising under an environmental response project which imposes activity and use limitations under the Uniform Environmental Covenants Act (27 Pa.C.S. §§ 6501-6517)."

245.1

Defined Immediate Threat of Contamination as "Spilling, leaking, emitting, discharging, escaping, leaching or disposing of a regulated substance from a storage tank into a containment structure or facility in an amount equal to or greater than the reportable released quantity determined under section 102 of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (42 U.S.C.A. § 9602) and regulations promulgated thereunder, or an amount equal to or greater than a discharge as defined in section 311 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C.A. § 1321) and regulations promulgated thereunder. The term also includes spilling, leaking, emitting, discharging, escaping, leaching or disposing of petroleum into a liquid-tight containment sump or emergency containment structure in an amount less than 25 gallons as a result of a tank handling activity unless the certified installer providing direct onsite supervision has control over the regulated substance, the regulated substance is completely contained and, prior to the certified installer leaving the storage tank facility, the total volume of the regulated substance is recovered and removed."

245.1

Deleted the definition of Reportable Release.

245.1

Defined Repair as, "An activity that restores to original operating condition a tank, piping, spill prevention equipment, overfill prevention equipment, corrosion protection equipment, release detection equipment or other storage tank system component that has failed to function properly."

245.1

Defined Spill Prevention Equipment as, "A liquid-tight container placed around the fill pipe or fill port riser of a storage tank designed to capture any product that may spill when the delivery hose is disconnected including, a catchment basin, spill containment bucket, or spill containment box."

245.1

Amended the definition of Tank Handling Activities to include "change-in-service".

245.1

Amended the definition of Underground Storage Tank to more accurately reflect regulations and laws under which storage tank systems excluded from regulation under Chapter 245 may be regulated, including: a pipeline facility which is regulated under 49 U.S.C.A. §§ 60101—60141; An intrastate pipeline facility regulated under state laws as provided in 49 U.S.C.A. §§ 60101—60141 and which is determined by the Secretary of the United States Department of Transportation to be connected to a pipeline or to be operated or intended to be capable of operating at pipeline pressure or as an integral part of a pipeline; and a wastewater treatment tank system that is part of a wastewater treatment facility regulated under section 307(b) or 402 of the Clean Water Act.

245.1

Amended the definition of Underground Storage Tank so the following UST systems are regulated under Chapter 245

  1. Wastewater treatment tank systems not part of a wastewater treatment facility regulated under Section 307(b) or 402 of the Clean Water Act;
  2. UST systems containing radioactive material or coolants that are regulated under the Atomic Energy Act of 1954;
  3. USTs that are part of an emergency generator system at a nuclear power generation facility licensed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and subject to NRC requirements regarding design and quality criteria.
Click here for more information on partially excluded UST systems

245.1

Added that the periodic testing of overfill prevention equipment, containment sumps, spill prevention equipment, and release detection equipment required under 245.437 must be conducted by Department-certified individuals holding the appropriate certification and documented on a Department form.
Click here to search for DEP-certified companies

245.31(f)

Added that trained UST operator information, required under 245.436, must be submitted with registration paperwork for installation or change in ownership of a UST system.
Click here for the Operator Training Documentation Form

245.41(c)(8)

Added that the Department will not refund registration fees to a previous owner due to a change of ownership.

245.42(d)

Subchapter B: Certification Program

Added passing examination scores are valid for 2 years from the date of the examination.
Click here for more information about certification

245.105(f)

Clarified conditions that qualify as conflicts of interest. Added that a certified inspector may not perform required Facility Operations Inspections at a facility where that inspector is designated as the Class A or Class B operator.

245.106

Added the "UMI" installer category.
Click here for information about the certification categories

245.110(b)(2)

Added that "UMX" and "UMI" certified individuals may conduct overfill prevention equipment evaluations, containment sump and spill prevention equipment testing and release detection equipment testing required under 245.437.
Click here for information about the certification categories

245.110

Added that "UTT" and "IUM" certified individuals may conduct containment sump and spill prevention equipment testing and release detection equipment testing required under 245.437.
Click here for information about the certification categories

245.110, 245.112

Modified number and type of activities required for initial certification.

245.111

Newly certified aboveground storage tank inspectors (IAF and IAM) must complete Department-provided inspector training prior to conducting inspections.

245.113

Department can suspend company and individual certification for causing pollution on nontank handling activities.

245.108, 245.123

Certified Individuals must report Modification Inspections to the Department within 30 days of conducting a Modification Inspection Activity.
Click here for the Aboveground Storage Tank Modification Inspection Summary form

245.132

Certified Individuals must report the following to the Department while performing services as a certified installer or inspector:

  1. A release
  2. Suspected or confirmed contamination
  3. A regulated substance observed in a containment structure or facility.
Click here for the Notification of Release – Notification of Contamination form

245.132

Certified Individual performing overfill evaluation, containment sump and spill prevention equipment test must report a failed test within 48 hours, and submit the DEP-provided testing form to the appropriate regional office with the Notification of Contamination form.

245.132

Added language strengthening requirement that applicable certified companies and installers must participate in and provide timely payment of TIIP fees.

245.132

Subchapter C: Permitting

Clarified that deliveries may not be made to storage tanks if the Department suspends, revokes or denies the operating permit, if the operating permit is withheld or withdrawn, or if the operating permit has not been issued.

245.203(f)

Clarified that an owner and/or operator who causes or allows a violation of the Storage Tank Act, Regulations, Orders of the Department, Conditions of permits or other applicable laws are subject to enforcement action by the Department.

245.203(g)

Amended Site-Specific Installation Permit requirements to exclude field constructed tank systems installed within previously regulated USTs that were permanently closed in accordance with the closure requirements in 245.452.

245.231(a)(4)

Merged all operating permits under one section titled "Operating Permits" (deleted General Operating Permit and Permit by rule).

245.222

Added that Site-Specific Installation Permits will expire five years from the date of issuance, unless an extension is granted by the Department.

245.231(d)

Added the requirement that a Site-Specific Installation Permit application must include the location of the proposed tanks and a Spill Prevention Response Plan that includes the proposed tanks.
Click here for the Site-Specific Installation Permit Application package

245.232(1), 245.233

Subchapter D: Corrective Action

Added language that upon completion of a suspected release investigation, the owner or operator shall:

  1. Report the release under 245.305 if a release is confirmed.
  2. If the investigation cannot determine whether a release occurred, report the suspected release to the Department within 15 days of the indication of the suspected release.
    • NOR/NOC form
  3. If the investigation determines a release did not occur, must completely recover and remove the regulated substance within 24 hours. If not, must call or email the regional office.
Click here for more information on suspected release investigations

245.304(c)

Clarified the conditions under which a release does not need to be reported to the Department. Completely contained, owner has control, total volume is recovered and removed within 24 hours and:

  1. It's a release of petroleum to an aboveground surface that is less than 25 gallons.
  2. It's a release of petroleum to a containment sump if the total volume of the release is contained below the lowest sump penetration.
For more information on release reporting and corrective action requirements, visit the Storage Tanks Cleanup Program's web-page

245.305(i)

Required the responsible party at a facility to notify the Department within 24 hours after initiating interim remedial actions.

245.306(e)

Required the responsible party at a facility to notify the Department within 24 hours of providing an alternate source of water to the owner(s) of affected or diminished water supplies.

245.307(e)

Required the responsible party at a facility to notify the Department within 24 hours after the initiation of site characterization activities.

245.309(c)(24)

Following submission of a complete remedial action plan selecting the background or Statewide health standard or site-specific standard, the Department will publish an acknowledgment of receipt of the remedial action plan in the PA Bulletin AND publish a notice of its final action in the PA Bulletin.

245.311(b) 245.311(b)(6)
and
245.311(c) 245.311(c)(6)

If during implementation of the remedial action plan the Department determines that the remedial action plan will not attain the selected remediation standard or will cause additional environmental harm, the Department may require the responsible party to suspend remedial action and notify the Department, by telephone or e-mail, within 24 hours of suspension. The Department may require the responsible party to prepare and submit a new or modified remedial action plan, to include selection of the new remediation standard, if applicable, to the Department in accordance with § 245.311.

245.312(g)

Following submission of the remedial action completion report, the Department will publish an acknowledgment of receipt of the remedial action completion report in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and publish a notice of its final action in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
For more information on release reporting and corrective action requirements, visit the Storage Tanks Cleanup Program's web-page

245.313(c)
245.313(c)(6)

Subchapter E: Technical Standards for USTs

Underground storage tank systems that store fuel solely for use by emergency power generators must now perform release detection.  Phase in as follows:

  1. USTs installed on or before 11/10/2007
    a. No later than 12/21/2020
  2. USTs installed after 11/10/2007
    a. No later than 12/22/2019
  3. USTS installed after 12/22/2018
    a. At installation

245.403(b)(1-3)

Partial exclusions:

  • a wastewater treatment UST that is not part of a wastewater treatment facility and is regulated under Section 307(b) or 402 of the Clean Water Act;
  • a UST containing radioactive material or coolant and is regulated under the Atomic Energy Act of 1954;
  • a UST that is part of an emergency generator system at a nuclear power generation facility licensed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and is subject to Nuclear Regulatory Commission requirements regarding design and quality criteria.
    1. If installed on or after May 7, 1985, the 3 above tank systems do NOT have to comply with:
      a. 245.411, 245.421(b)(3) and (4)(ii) and (iii), 245.422(d), 245.432(g) and 245.436—245.446
    2. If installed before May 7, 1985, the 3 above tank systems do NOT have to comply with:
      a. 245.411—245.422, 245.424, 245.432, 245.433, AND 245.436—245.446.
Click here for more information on partially excluded UST systems

245.403(c)

The following tank systems, installed on or before 12/22/2018, which were previously considered exempt, must register with the Department no later than 02/20/2019:

  • a wastewater treatment UST that is not part of a wastewater treatment facility and is regulated under Section 307(b) or 402 of the Clean Water Act;
  • a UST containing radioactive material or coolant and is regulated under the Atomic Energy Act of 1954;
  • a UST that is part of an emergency generator system at a nuclear power generation facility licensed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and is subject to Nuclear Regulatory Commission requirements regarding design and quality criteria.
  • A field-constructed UST installed on or before 10/11/1997 storing a hazardous substance.
    1. The field-constructed UST stated here has until 12/22/2019 to comply with 245.421, 245.422, 245.431, 245.432, 245.437 and 245.441—245.446.
Click here for more information on partially excluded UST systems

245.403(d)

Required 30-day notification prior to the installation of piping systems, or replacement of dispensers or addition of new dispensers.
Click here for the Underground Storage Tank System Installation/Closure Notification Form

245.421(a)(2)

Clarified that when 50% or more of the existing product piping is replaced, the entire piping system must meet the requirements of new piping system requirements.

245.421(b)(2)

Spill and overfill prevention equipment must be permanently installed.

245.421(b)(3)(i)

Disallowed overfill devices that "Restrict flow 30 minutes prior to overfilling, alert the operator with a high-level alarm 1 minute before overfilling, or automatically shut off flow into the tank so that none of the fittings located on top of the tank are exposed to product due to overfilling.

Deleted Section

Prohibited installation and replacement of ball floats to meet overfill prevention requirements, after 12/22/2018.

245.421(b)(3)(iii)

Deleted cathodic protection upgrade provisions allowing USTs to be upgraded if the integrity is ensured by the following methods:

  • the tank has been installed for less than 10 years and has been monitored monthly for releases;
  • the tank has been installed for less than 10 years and is assessed for corrosion holes by conducting two tightness tests.

245.422(b)(2)

Added that under-dispenser containment must be installed when an existing dispenser is replaced with another dispenser and all equipment at or below the shear valve, needed to connect the piping to the dispenser, is replaced. Retained under-dispenser containment must be installed when a major modification is performed at the dispenser involving excavation beneath the dispenser.
Click here for more information about under-dispenser containment

245.422(e)

Cathodic protection tests must be documented on a Department form.
Click here for the Underground Storage Tanks Cathodic Protection System Evaluation Form

245.432(a)(2)(iii)

Required owners/operators to verify compatibility of UST systems upon request using a form provided by the Department.
Click here for more information on UST system equipment compatibility
Click here for the Alternative Fuel Storage Tank Installation/Conversion Form

245.433(b)

Required owners and operators to maintain documentation of the last test when using periodic testing to meet the requirements of 245.437.

245.435(d)(19)

Required owners and operators to maintain records of periodic monitoring of the interstice of double-walled spill buckets and sumps when using interstitial monitoring of double-walled spill buckets and sumps to meet the requirements of 245.437.
Click here for the Spill Prevention Equipment/Containment Sump Integrity Testing Form

245.435(d)(20)

Required owners and operators to maintain 12 months of documentation of the periodic operation and maintenance walkthrough inspections required under 245.438.

245.435(d)(21)

Clarified the requirements for a facility's written emergency procedures.

245.436(a)(3)

Clarified that Class C Operator training must be specific to the site at which an individual is designated as the Class C Operator.

245.436(c)(3)

Removed reciprocity for Class A and Class B Operator training courses.

Deleted Section

At least every 3 years the following components must be tested:

  1. Containment sumps used for interstitial monitoring
  2. Spill prevention equipment
  3. Overfill
At least annually, the electronic and mechanical components of release detection equipment must be tested.

Phase in period:
  1. Tank systems installed on or before 12/22/2018, have 1 year before requirement, then;
  2. Due date based on FOI due date but no later than December 21, 2021, whichever comes first.
Tank systems installed after 12/22/2018, must test at installation.

245.437

At least every 30 days owners or operators must check:

  1. Spill prevention equipment/fill pipe/fill cap
  2. Release detection equipment (is it operating)
At least annually owners or operators must:
  1. Visually check for damage and the presence of liquid/debris in containment sumps.
  2. Check handheld release detection equipment for operability and serviceability.
Phase in period: Effective 12/22/2019

245.438

Deleted monthly sump-check requirements for UST systems installed on or before 11/10/2007.

Deleted Section

Deleted release detection requirements for suction piping systems meeting the requirements of 245.442(b)(2)(ii)(A-E).

Deleted Section

Disallowed the use of inventory control to meet tank release detection requirements.

Deleted Section

Disallowed manual tank gauging as a method for tank release detection for underground storage tanks greater than 1,000 gallons in capacity.

Deleted Section

Disallowed use of tank gauges installed prior to 12/22/1990 that do not meet the minimum leak threshold requirements.

245.444(3)

Removed the allowance of 20 days between the end of a Statistical Inventory Reconciliation monitoring period to report availability, to clarify that SIR reports must be available within each 30-day monitoring period.

245.444(7)

Required emergency generator USTs to be equipped with piping release detection that triggers an audible or visible alarm, clarified that flow restriction and/or positive pump shutoff are not required for emergency generator UST systems.
Click here for more information about detecting releases in underground piping systems

245.445(1)(i-iii)

Storage tank facilities that are unattended when open for business must be equipped with a line leak detector that restricts or automatically shuts off the flow of product.

245.445(1)(iii)

Owners and operators must empty a tank being placed temporarily out-of-service prior to submitting the amended registration form.

245.451(c)

Clarified that the Department may require testing to verify tightness, compatibility, and operability of tanks being taken from Temporary Out-of-Service status to operating status.

245.451(i)

Clarified that a major modification to a dispenser that involves excavation beneath it and removal of the dispenser is also considered a permanent closure of that part of the storage tank system and must be completed consistent with the requirements for permanent closure of a UST system.
Click here for more information about UST system closure

245.452(c)

Clarified that for UST system closures, registration forms must be signed by the owner and the certified installer who provided direct onsite supervision and control of the UST closure/removal activities

245.452(e)

Subchapter F: Technical Standards for Large ASTs and ASTs in Underground Vaults

Added all ASTs in underground vaults to the requirements under Subchapter F.

245.501

The Department will publish notice of approved variances in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.

245.503(6)

Required revisions or addendums of Spill Prevention Response Plans to be submitted to the Department within 180 days.
Click here for more information about Spill Prevention Response Plans

245.512

Required owners and operators of ASTs in underground vaults to check the continuous leak detection systems, required under 245.523(7), to ensure the equipment is functioning as designed, as part of their 72-hour visual inspections.

245.513(b)(1)(iii)

Required owners and operators of AST facilities with an aggregate aboveground storage capacity greater than 21,000 gallons to maintain a written or electronic log. Each entry shall include, at a minimum:

  1. the name of the certified individual,
  2. the individual's signature or equivalent verification of presence onsite,
  3. the company name,
  4. the date of work, start and end times, and
  5. a brief description of work performed, including tank identification.

245.514(b)

Added recordkeeping requirements for log entries required under 245.514(b).

245.516(c)(8)

Added recordkeeping requirements for cathodic protection tests.

  1. Last two cathodic protection test results
  2. Last three rectifier readings for each 60-day period

245.516(c)(11) and 245.516(c)(16)

Clarified that tank bottoms that are not adequately protected from corrosion and deterioration shall be upgraded.

245.531

Added minimum testing requirements for cathodic protection systems.

  1. Sacrificial systems – Once every 3 years
  2. Impressed current systems – Annually
  3. Rectifier checks – Once every 60 days

245.532

Clarified that coatings or lining systems used to protect a tank interior from corrosion and deterioration must be bonded firmly to the interior surfaces of the tank.

245.534(a)

Required shutdown procedures used for overfill prevention to be in writing, and provided to the Department upon request.

245.541(b)(2)

Clarified that newly installed or replacement emergency containment structures or emergency containment structures for aboveground storage tanks installed after 10/11/1997 must be 1 × 10-6 cm/sec.
Click here for more information about emergency containment

245.542(1)

Clarified that only aboveground storage tanks installed on or before 10/11/1997 can meet the Spill Prevention Response Plan paired with a Professional Engineer's evaluation emergency containment option.

245.542(2)

Clarified that water must be removed from emergency containment structures before it comes into contact with the AST or piping.

245.542(f)

In-service Integrity Inspection interval for ASTs in underground vaults greater than 5,000 gallons in capacity, and ASTs in underground vaults storing highly hazardous substances greater than 1,100 gallons in capacity shall be:

  1. within 6 and 12 months of installation
  2. at least every 3 years thereafter
New inspection schedule will be set at next scheduled inspection.

245.551(d)(5)

Aboveground storage tanks shall be permanently closed within 5 years of being placed TOS unless the owner requests an extension in writing and the Department approves the request.
Click here for more information about AST closures

245.562(f)

Subchapter G: Technical Standards for Small ASTs

Required revisions or addendums of Spill Prevention Response Plans to be submitted to the Department within 180 days.
Click here for more information about Spill Prevention Response Plans

245.603(a)

Required owners and operators of AST facilities with an aggregate aboveground storage capacity greater than 21,000 gallons to maintain a written or electronic log. Each entry shall include, at a minimum:

  1. the name of the certified individual,
  2. the individual's signature or equivalent verification of presence onsite,
  3. the company name,
  4. the date of work, start and end times, and a brief description of work performed, including tank identification.

245.603(c)

Added variance provisions for ASTs equal to or less than 21,000 gallons in capacity.
Click here for more information about storage tank system variances

245.606

Required spill prevention equipment to be permanently installed.

245.612(d)(1)

Clarified that AST systems and AST system components must be maintained in a good state of repair to ensure they function as designed.

245.612(h)

Added minimum testing requirements for cathodic protection systems.

  1. Sacrificial systems – Once every 3 years
  2. Impressed current systems – Annually
  3. Rectifier checks – Once every 60 days

245.613(c)

Added recordkeeping requirements for log entries required under 245.603(c).

245.615(b)(8)

Added recordkeeping requirements for cathodic protection tests.

245.615(b)(9)-(10)

Reduced the In-Service Integrity Inspection interval from 10 years to 5 years.

New inspection schedule will be set at next scheduled inspection.

245.616(c)

Aboveground storage tanks shall be permanently closed within 5 years of being placed TOS unless the owner requests an extension in writing and the Department approves the request

245.617

Separated the requirements for permanent closures or changes in service of ASTs from the requirements for Temporarily Out-of-Service ASTs. Clarified requirements for closure or change-in-service.
Click here for more information about AST closures

245.618

Subchapter H: Financial Responsibility for USTs and UST Facilities

Clarified that continuous participation in USTIF requires timely paying all applicable fees and conforming with other requirements for participation in USTIF.
Click here to go to the Underground Storage Tank Indemnification Fund webpage

245.704(a)