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Regulatory guidance for oil industry

Our requirements for prevention and preparedness result in rapid and aggressive responses to oil and hazardous material spills, minimizing environmental damages and threats to public health and safety. Reporting, planning, and prevention requirements vary among oil-handling industries and are identified below. Each requirement listed links to more detailed information.

State requirements for facilities, railroads, and pipelines

Facility owners and operators should be aware that they are also subject to federal requirements that vary from state requirements. State prevention and preparedness requirements for facilities are established in the following rules: The three rules classify facilities in different ways. Contact us if you're unsure of your classification.
 
Requirement Class 1 facilities Class 2 facilities Class 3 facilities Class 4 facilities
Advance notice of oil transfer Semi-annual reporting
Oil transfers & transfer inspections  
Pre-booming, alternative measures, & equivalent compliance  
Safe and Effective Threshold Determination reports  
Prevention plans      
Operations manuals    
Facility inspections & site visits
Training and certification programs  
Response plans      
Contingency plans      
Oil spill drills    
Clean Marina certification       Optional

Railroads and pipelines are considered facilities for the purposes of contingency planning.
 
Requirement Railroads Pipelines
Advance notice of oil transfer   Semi-annual reporting for crude
Contingency plans
Oil spill drills

State requirements for vessels

Vessel owners and operators should be aware that they are also subject to federal requirements that vary from state requirements. State prevention and preparedness requirements for vessels are established in the following rules and law:  
Requirement Cargo, passenger
& fishing vessels
Tank vessels
Advance notice of oil transfer
Oil transfers & transfer inspections
Safe and Effective Threshold Determination reports
Pre-booming, alternative measures, & equivalent compliance
Bunkering
Emergency Response Towing Vessel deployment report
Vessel emergency reporting
Financial responsibility
Contingency plans
Oil spill drills
Substantial risk inspections  
Spill prevention plans (VBAP, ECOPRO)   Optional

Definitions

Facilities

Class 1

Class 1 facilities are large, fixed shore-side facilities such as refineries and refueling terminals. This definition includes facilities that transfer to or from tank vessels and pipelines.

Class 2

Class 2 facilities are mobile facilities, such as tank trucks and portable tanks.

Class 3

The Class 3 category of oil-handling facilities applies to small tank farms and terminals that transfer oil to non-recreational vessels that have a fuel capacity of 10,500 gallons or more. This definition does not include facilities that transfer to tank vessels and pipelines, as they are Class 1 facilities.

Class 4

Class 4 facilities are marinas or other small fueling facilities that transfer oil to non-recreational vessels with a total oil capacity of less than 10,500 gallons.

Recreational vs. non-recreational vessels

Recreational marinas are marinas that serve recreational vessels ONLY and are not subject to the oil transfer requirements. Vessels are considered recreational if owned and operated only for pleasure with no monetary gain involved, and if leased, rented, or chartered to another for recreational use without monetary gain. Examples include house boats, ski boats, and other small craft on a rental or lease agreement.

If a vessel does not meet the definition of a recreational vessel, it is considered a non-recreational vessel. Vessels considered non-recreational are owned and operated for monetary gain. It also may be leased, rented or chartered to another and used for monetary gain. This definition is based on the vessel’s use, not its size. Examples of non-recreational vessels are: sightseeing or tour boats, passenger vessels, chartered fishing boats, boats used for parasailing, tug boats, etc.

Railroads & pipelines Vessels