The environmental, safety, economic and legal concern resulting from underground storage tanks has raised increasing concerns of both underground and aboveground fuel oil storage tanks for home owners, home buyers, lenders and real estate agents. Environmental issues include soil and groundwater contamination. Some leaking tanks have affected multiple families and entire communities. Potential fire risk and tank collapse are safety concerns. Economic issues include: maintenance costs, cost of tank system or soil testing, tank removal, and potential contamination cleanup. Legal concerns include determining responsibility and potential third party damages.
What Is The Law In Wisconsin?
The Wisconsin Administrative Code COMM 10 requires that all underground tanks (UST) storing regulated product be registered with the Department of Commerce.
All underground fuel oil tanks are regulated by the code. All residential underground heating fuel tanks 1,100 gallon capacity or larger must have a tightness test conducted prior to May 1, 2001 and every two years thereafter. If the tank does not successfully pass the tightness test an investigation must be conducted and the problem corrected. This may involve the removal of the tank and remediation of any contamination.
What If I Am Purchasing A Home That Has An Underground Fuel Oil Tank?
Before purchasing a home it is strongly recommended that buried tanks be tested. Once a property is purchased, the liability for a leaking tank becomes the responsibility of the new owner. Upon completion of the purchase of the property the new owner must initiate a change-of-ownership to the tank registration.
What If I Am Selling A Home That Has An Underground Fuel Oil Tank?
Be honest and up-front about it. The Wisconsin Realtors Association Addendum A To The Offer To Purchase includes a disclosure statement. Misrepresentation of the tanks status can result in significant legal and liable consequences.
How Do I Have My Tank Tightness Tested?
Protanic, Inc. has certified personnel and equipment approved in the state of Wisconsin to test buried tanks for leaks (tightness testing). Protanic, Inc. has been testing underground tanks since 1972.