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When should a chemical or oil spill be reported? To Whom?

The sole reporting number for the federal government: 800-424-8802. Additional information on reporting is available on-line via www.nrc.uscg.mil/

Federal spill reporting regulations are most often based on specific chemicals and specific amounts (reportable quantity - RQ) spilled. Spills of hazardous materials, without regard to RQ, during transportation under circumstances such as death, injury, significant property damage, evacuation, highway closure, etc., are reportable. Also, spills that violate water quality standards, including spills that cause a film, sheen, discoloration, or deposition of sludge in water or adjoining shoreline, require reporting. Finally, there may be specific spill reporting requirements in specific permits.

States and municipalities differ in their reporting requirements. The State of Idaho, for example, requires that any hazardous material spill that has or is likely to affect water be reported immediately. Above-ground petroleum spills from petroleum tank systems exceeding 25 gallons and other petroleum system releases (for example underground leaks) must be reported within 24 hours. Above-ground releases less than 25 gallons must be reported if cleanup cannot be accomplished within twenty-four (24) hours. Releases of dielectric oil over twenty-five (25) gallons from oil filled electric equipment or any dielectric oil release causing a threat to waters of the State must be reported within 48 hours of discovery.

A centralized spill reporting telephone number in Idaho is 800-632-8000.

Although we do not recommend that you delay reporting a spill, it may be wise to contact your attorney and consultant to provide advice tailored to your situation.
Other FAQ
- Would our project remain confidential?
- How do I choose the right consultant?
- Why are environmental property assessments variously called Phase 1, Phase 2 and Phase 3?
- How does a lead-based Paint Inspection differ from lead-based paint Risk Assessment?
- Why are sample results often reported as less than some number rather than "0"?
- Do all environmental permits require monitoring?
- Is my company required to report regulatory violations that we identify ourselves?
- When should a chemical or oil spill be reported? To Whom?
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