Fuel storage facilities must adhere to regulations and codes of practice to prevent leaks and maintain health and safety standards for employees. As an inherently hazardous substance, fuel is highly volatile and readily burning within its vapor phase. Fuel leaks are highly dangerous when ignition sources are present, so employees of fuel storage facilities should employ safety solutions, such as tank monitoring systems, to ensure leaks are detected well before the quantities of fuel needed to cause an explosion.
Minor leaks may go undetected for long periods, leading to environmental problems and significant health concerns. Aromatic hydrocarbons such as benzene and toluene are known carcinogens, while other hydrocarbons and petrol additives represent health risks. If hazardous components of petrol, such as benzene, get into groundwater, there is a major risk of contamination of water supplies. Above ground, there is a large potential for leaks in storage tanks due to degradation, damage, or corrosion.
There are also risks of benzene and other chemicals being released into the air. Benzene is a particularly hazardous chemical. The effects of high exposure include headache, dizziness, nausea, and tiredness, while long-term exposure to excessive levels is a direct cause of leukemia. It also targets the liver, kidneys, lungs, heart, and brain, and can cause DNA strand breaks and chromosomal damage. Additives to petrol such as anti-knock chemicals are also known carcinogens.
While a leak of petrol likely to cause an explosion would be readily smelled, a small leak that might not yet be noticeable could still pose a significant health risk. Regular monitoring is essential to detect any leak before it becomes a major problem. The Otis Instruments WireFree OIA-SDPUMP measures the gas concentration in the tank head-space before opening the thief hatch by drawing in an air sample at a user-configurable interval. The sensor then determines the current gas concentration measurement and a message is sent to the Master Controller notifying users of the current gas value via the screen on the Master Controller, cellular text message, or email alerts. This information can be used by field technicians to determine the type of safety gear that is appropriate prior to opening the thief hatch.
The OIA-SDPUMP features two Teflon tubes. One tube draws an air sample into the enclosure; the other tube removes exhaust from the device and puts it back in the surrounding environment. Ideal for applications such as storage tanks, chemical tanks, agriculture and more, the OIA-SDPUMP offers 15,000 pump hours and easy filter maintenance.
Otis Instruments also offers Otis Link, providing industrial equipment monitoring devices and related data services. Within Otis Link, we offer automation and controls and telemetry monitoring. Otis Link automation & controls systems provide a modernized AWS secure cloud communication system capable of tracking and delivering data in real-time, sending alerts via email or SMS text message. Connecting the user to assets via wired or wireless configurations, the user can efficiently and effectively access and control equipment remotely. Otis Link telemetry systems provide cloud-based remote industrial equipment monitoring devices and related data services. Otis Link devices send alarms by email and SMS text message, along with real-time data viewable on an easy-to-use website. Connecting the user to assets via wired or wireless configurations, the user can view and manage their equipment effectively.
To learn more about gas detection solutions for your application, utilize the OIA-SDPUMP for your tank monitoring needs, or have a question, contact our team today.