Implementing an Effective Emergency Response Plan for Storage Tank Incidents

Home - Storage Tanks - Implementing an Effective Emergency Response Plan for Storage Tank Incidents
storage tanks

Above ground storage tanks play a vital role in various industries, from agriculture to petrochemicals, holding essential resources such as water, fuel, and chemicals. With the responsibility of operating these storage tanks comes the inherent risk of potential incidents, such as spills, leaks, or structural failures. Consequently, it is crucial for storage tank operators to develop and implement an effective emergency response plan, enabling them to manage and mitigate hazards in a timely and efficient manner. 

An emergency response plan serves as a structured, proactive approach to storage tank incident management, guiding you and your team through the necessary steps to minimise environmental impact, protect personnel, and limit asset damage. By understanding the risks, planning for various scenarios, and ensuring regular review and update of your emergency response plan, you can be better prepared for potential incidents and their consequences. 

In this insightful blog post, we will delve into the intricacies of creating and executing an emergency response plan for storage tank incidents, covering risk factors, development stages, and the vital role that a professional storage tank service provider like ATM Tanks plays in maintaining safety and compliance standards. 

Understanding Corrosion in Above Ground Storage Tanks

Corrosion is the natural chemical process that occurs when a tank’s material reacts with its surrounding environment, resulting in the deterioration of the material over time. This phenomenon is significantly impacted by factors such as moisture, temperature, chemical exposure, and oxygen presence. For above ground tanks, the most common form of corrosion is associated with the electrochemical reaction between the metal surface of the tank and its environment. This type of corrosion can affect the tank’s exterior surfaces, interior surfaces, or both, depending on the specific operating conditions and materials stored within the tank.

The consequences of corrosion include the weakening of the tank’s structural components, reduction of the tank’s service life, potential for leaks and spills, and increased safety and environmental risks. As a result, it is critical for tank owners and operators to understand the nature of corrosion, monitor its progression, and implement appropriate control strategies to maintain the longevity and safety of their storage facilities.

Methods and Techniques for Corrosion Control

Several methods and techniques can be employed to manage and mitigate the risks associated with corrosion in above ground storage tanks. These measures include:

1. Protective Coatings: Applying suitable protective coatings or linings to the tank’s internal and external surfaces can help to create a barrier against corrosion-causing agents. Some examples of protective coatings are epoxy paint, acrylic, or fusion-bonded coatings, all of which provide a layer of protection against corrosive substances and environmental factors.

2. Cathodic Protection Systems: These systems are commonly used to protect the tank’s exterior surfaces by using a sacrificial anode to attract corrosion-causing agents away from the tank material. The anode corrodes preferentially, leaving the tank material intact, and can be replaced periodically as needed.

3. Regular Inspections and Maintenance: Conducting routine visual inspections, as well as more comprehensive internal and external inspections using non-destructive testing techniques, can help to monitor and detect signs of corrosion. This information can then be used to inform targeted maintenance, repairs, or replacements to address localized corrosion issues before they escalate.

4. Material Selection: Choosing the right tank material or alloy, such as stainless steel or corrosion-resistant alloys, can provide additional protection against corrosion if the tank will be exposed to particularly harsh or corrosive environments.

Partnering with ATM Tanks for Effective Corrosion Control

ATM Tanks, a leader in tank design, installation, repairs, and maintenance for above ground tanks across Australia and the Pacific, provides expert guidance, products, and services to support effective corrosion control strategies. By partnering with ATM Tanks, tank owners and operators can benefit from:

1. Expert Consultation: ATM Tanks offers consultation services to help you assess your current corrosion control methods, identifying potential areas for improvement and recommending suitable control measures based on your specific operational conditions.

2. Protective Coating Solutions: With a broad range of protective coatings and linings available, ATM Tanks can help you select and apply an appropriate coating solution that provides an effective barrier against corrosion for your tank’s internal and external surfaces.

3. Cathodic Protection System Design and Installation: ATM Tanks can assist in designing and installing customized cathodic protection systems tailored to your specific tank materials and environmental conditions.

4. Maintenance and Inspection Services: ATM Tanks provides comprehensive maintenance and inspection services, including non-destructive testing techniques, to help tank owners and operators monitor, detect, and address any signs of corrosion in a timely manner.

The Long-Term Benefits of Proactive Corrosion Control

Implementing effective corrosion control measures can yield significant long-term benefits for tank owners and operators:

1. Increased Longevity: Preventing and mitigating corrosion can significantly extend the lifespan of your above ground storage tanks, reducing the need for frequent replacements and associated costs.

2. Enhanced Safety and Environmental Protection: By minimizing the risk of leaks and spills, corrosion control measures can help to promote safety for personnel and protect the surrounding environment from potential contamination.

3. Cost Savings: Proactively addressing corrosion issues through regular inspections and maintenance can lead to cost savings by avoiding more extensive repairs or tank replacements due to severe corrosion damage.

4. Compliance: Implementing corrosion control measures can help tank owners and operators maintain compliance with industry standards and government regulations, including environmental protection and safety requirements.


Corrosion control is an essential aspect of maintaining the structural integrity, safety, and longevity of above ground storage tanks. Understanding the causes and consequences of corrosion, as well as implementing appropriate methods and techniques to manage and mitigate corrosion risks, is crucial for ensuring the continued performance and reliability of your storage facilities. By partnering with an experienced provider like ATM Tanks, you can create effective corrosion control strategies tailored to the unique needs and conditions of your tank operations.

At ATM Tanks, we offer reliable industrial tank maintenance, installation, and repair services that include corrosion control measures. Our team of experts has extensive experience in the field of above-ground storage tanks and can provide customized solutions to meet your specific needs. Trust us that your above-ground storage tanks are protected against corrosion and that your operations are running smoothly and safely. Contact us today to learn more about our corrosion control services and how we can help you maintain the structural integrity of your tanks!

Aaron James
Follow me

About The Author

Aaron James
Aaron has been working at ATM Tanks for the past 5 years. He has completed a wide range of projects across Australia including new tank builds, cleaning and servicing existing tanks and countless tank inspections. However he has excelled recently at project management for ATM Tanks.

Leave A Comment

error: Content is protected !!
Call Now Button