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UST Systems - Maintenance Basics

John Huang, Ph.D., PE and John Poullain, PE

This two-hour online course provides general guidelines and checklists for the inspection and maintenance of underground storage tank (UST) systems, sumps and spill buckets and pertinent components used to dispense petroleum products. The functions of the various UST mechanical and electrical devices are described to give an understanding of the proper performance of the system. A UST system must be properly maintained to operate efficiently in order to prevent leakage of petroleum products into the environment. The course describes maintenance required to avoid problems that adversely affecting operation.

Many advances have been made in mechanical equipment such as spillage or overflow detectors and alarms that safeguard against the threat of UST petroleum releases. Still USTís continue to experience leakage. For instance a one-gallon leakage of fuel per week from a poorly maintained spill bucket can result in up to 195 tons of contaminated soil in a year. Such leakage continues to occur despite many safety features installed to protect against spill and overflow incidences.

Periodic inspections, knowing when a component of a system is defective or improperly maintained and understanding what is necessary to correct observed problems are important to continue proper operations of a system. The course covers the basics of good maintenance, value of inspections and items to look for that adversely affect UST system operations. Simple housekeeping measures like removal of ice, liquids and debris from the sumps; indications of staining, condition of piping and connections, seal or equipment damages and positioning of sensors should be checked.

This course includes a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of the course materials.

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NY PE & PLS: You must choose courses that are technical in nature or related to matters of laws and ethics contributing to the health and welfare of the public. NY Board does not accept courses related to office management, risk management, leadership, marketing, accounting, financial planning, real estate, and basic CAD. Specific course topics that are on the borderline and are not acceptable by the NY Board have been noted under the course description on our website.