Storage and Handling of Flammable and Combustible Liquids Standards


Changes to AS1940:2017 and what this means for you?

Are you up to date with changes to fuel storage regulations?

Australian Standard 1940 (Storage and Handling of Flammable and Combustible Liquids) was formally updated in August 2017. This change is important, because the standard forms an important reference for our State and Territory fuel storage legislation.


Significant changes include:

  • Self Bunded Tanks: The maximum capacity of self-bunded tanks has been increased to 200,000 litres for combustible liquids on mine sites, allowing more economical storage of fuel on site and creating greater opportunity for flexible fuel storage options.
  • Liquid levels in tanks: AS1940 now limits a tank’s Safe Fill Level to no greater than 95 per cent of tank capacity. For above-ground flammable liquid tanks over 5,000 litres, or 25,000 litres for combustible liquid, a high-level alarm is now required.
  • Spill response: A spill response kit is now a mandatory requirement for sites handling Class 3 flammable liquids. The kit should consist of “some or all of absorbent pads, booms, loose absorbent and contaminated waste bags that are packed in a readily identifiable reuseable weather-resistant container and are compatible with liquids stored”.

Can I still store flammable product in above-ground tanks?

The short answer is yes. Standard Category 3 above-ground self-bunded diesel tanks can also be used to store Flammable Product like motor spirits, but there are specific signage and venting requirements. If you’re ordering a tank for this purpose, it’s important to let us know so we can supply the correct tank for your application.

You can find detailed information about the storage of flammable liquids in AS1940-2017.

The key points you need to be aware of are:

  1. Identify the hazardous area: The biggest difference between on-ground Diesel Storage (combustible) and motor spirit storage is the hazardous area that it creates. Basically, this is the area in which an explosive is present in quantities large enough to require special precautions for the construction, installation and use of potential ignition sources.
  2. Choose a location: When choosing a location for above-ground flammable storage there are many legislative requirements. Location of your tank will need to adhere to the tables outlined in the Standard. Special circumstances may be granted if tanks or firewalls can be built to maintain a Fire Rating Level of 240/240/240.
  3. Electrical installation: Electrical installation requirements are particularly stringent in flammable storage, and must comply with AS3000. All electrical equipment within a hazardous area must have correct explosion-proof connections and fittings. It is always good practice prior to any installation to have a Hazardous Area Zoning completed by a competent person as per AS60079.10, to ensure the correct equipment is assigned and approved for that application.
  4. Signage: This is a key aspect of flammable storage. All signage must be upgraded to comply with regulations.
  5. Hatches and vents: AS1940-2017 requires that explosion-proof hatches and PV vents be fitted to flammable storage tanks. The size of these will vary according to tank storage volume.
  6. Dispenser: When storing flammable liquids, the dispenser needs to be mounted remotely from the tank due to the Hazardous Area Zoning around the tank.

Ask the fuel experts

There’s no substitute for experience. When it comes to storing flammable liquids safely and in compliance with the Australian Standard and State and Territory regulations, getting the right advice from the start can save you money, reduce risk and give you peace of mind.

The new standard now applies to all service stations and bulk fuel facilities as well as other sites where flammable and combustible liquids are stored.  If you’re not sure whether you’re still compliant, call our expert team at F.E.S. TANKS.

High-tech fuel saving solutions for big rigs are on the way

truck platooning

When it comes to disruption, big rigs are a big target.

The road transport industry is one burdened by high fuel, labour and safety costs – but that could be set to change as Silicon Valley disruptors increasingly focus on new ways to reduce costs and improve efficiency. And the changes are coming soon to a highway near you.

truck platooning

Last year, the WA Government approved truck platooning trials in the state in conjunction with  Silicon Valley innovators Peloton Technology.

The technology creates a form of convoy where all vehicles are in constant communication to synchronise speed, braking and positioning. The lead truck assumes control of the platoon through vehicle to vehicle communication, and depending on the trailers used and the gap between vehicles, which can range from 1.5 seconds to 0.6 seconds, the reduction in drag can realise fuel savings of up to 12 per cent.

It’s a promising advance – particularly in Australia, where lengthy truck routes between urban centres make the potential benefits even more pronounced.

Addressing the trucking industry pain points now

As Peloton Technology founder Josh Switkes told, entrepreneurial interest in trucking is growing and game-changing technology is closer than you might think.

Switkes had worked with Volkswagen and the venture-backed start-up Tula, mostly looking at advancements around cars, when by chance he read some statistics around trucking.

“I was blown away by the statistics about money spent on fuel and labour costs and crashes,” Switkes told

“And I wrote that down because it really struck me.”

That interest led him to gather a team and start Peloton in 2011 then set out to gain a better understanding of the industry and what changes could help transport companies in the short-term. They started by going to trucking shows.

After talking with fleet owners and suppliers, he and his co-founders took what they’d learned and focused on platooning technology to reduce drag and boost fuel efficiency.

Their idea was to create systems that would control braking and acceleration, so fleet owners could benefit from fuel savings and reduced crashes while still keeping a human behind the wheel.

Six years down the road, testing has shown the front vehicle in a two-truck platoon using Peloton’s software increases its fuel efficiency by 4.5 per cent, while the rear vehicle has a 10 per cent improvement.

In April this year, Peloton raised $60 million in venture capital, led by telematics pioneer Omnitracs.  Volvo Group Venture Capital is also among investors.

The semi-autonomous driving technology is expected to be on the market within months, with 2018 tipped to be the first full year of sales.

Volvo is already working with Peloton to integrate the technology into its trucks, and regulators are expected to welcome the technology because it will support greenhouse gas emissions targets.

You can watch a demonstration of platooning in action below.

Peloton Platooning B-Roll: Utah from Peloton Technology on Vimeo.

For more information about keeping fuel costs down in the trucking industry, get advice from the fuel storage specialists at

New Self Bunded Tank Distributor in Perth, Western Australia

Genset Hire and Sales Australia (GHASA) self bunded tank distrubutor in perth, western australia

Genset Hire and Sales Australia (GHASA) appointed new F.E.S. TANKS distributor

Updated Press Release: Cairns, Queensland, Australia.
Mar 02, 2018, 14:04 ET

The founders of F.E.S. TANKS, Australia’s market leader in self-bunded tanks, are pleased to expand their reach into Perth and across Western Australia through a new distribution agreement with Genset Hire and Sales Australia (GHASA).

Genset Hire and Sales Australia (GHASA) self bunded tank distrubutor in perth, western australia

The GHASA team, with more than 40 years technical and industry experience in temporary and remote power solutions, are the ideal partners to supply and install the F.E.S. range of high-quality, easily transportable fuel tanks and storage solutions across WA, backed up by on-the-ground local expertise.

Daniel Porter, F.E.S. TANKS’ Business Development Manager said GHASA’s customer focus, technical ability and problem-solving approach made them the right fit for F.E.S.

“Having GHASA as our new WA distributor ensures we have local bunded tank experts available to service customers in Perth and the surrounding western regions,” Daniel Porter said.
“It also ensures greater stock availability in conjunction with a faster service solution – a win for customers in WA.”

GHASA spokesman Chris Nancarrow,  said the strong regional experience and credentials of the F.E.S. team, who are experts in developing tailored fuel solutions from metropolitan sites to the most remote areas, informed their innovative product design.

“Like us, F.E.S. TANKS was founded in regional Australia – by a team of experts with extensive practical experience,” he said.

“The tanks they design are built to last, with practical features that make them exceptionally easy to use, transport and maintain – ideal for responding to the challenges of temporary and remote power requirements in WA and across regional Australia.

“We’re pleased to distribute this industry leading product in WA – we know how important local connection is, and we look forward to working with F.E.S. to enhance their presence on the ground in the west and give our customers access to a top quality, Australian designed fuel storage solution.”

Daryl Cygler, Marketing Director of F.E.S. TANKS also had this to add:

“Perth and the Western Australian region is an area of significant importance for growth and opportunities. It is also a massive region that comes with many logistical challenges, and this is where we feel our self bunded tanks can help. Having GHASA as our premium self bunded tank distributor in Perth, Western Australia just makes sense. Not only for us but for wanting customers as well.”

About F.E.S. TANKS

F.E.S. TANKS has fast become the market leader in self-bunded fuel storage tanks in Australia. Established in 2013, their reputation for offering environmentally friendly fuel storage tanks with unique fuel dispensing and management solutions has lead to fast national growth and expansion. F.E.S. TANKS works with industries on the move to provide innovative next-generation fuel storage solutions designed to take business into the future. For more information, please visit


Genset Hire and Sales Australia are the experts in temporary and remote power solutions. The team has more than 40 years’ experience in power generation, and provides generators, fuel tanks, load banks, service and repairs for customers across Australia, with service technicians on-call 24 hours a day. For more information, please visit

Truck emissions? Getting the basics right starts with fuel storage.

semi-trailer on road. Awarenesss around trucking emissions.

Help Reduce Trucking Emissions with Sensible Fuel Storage Solutions

The Australian Trucking Association has weighed in on the Federal Government’s review of climate change policies with a submission focused on making the best use of fuel to support emissions reductions in the transport sector. With one of the oldest trucking fleets in the OECD, the ATA acknowledges low profitability and fuel costs are a significant issue for Australian road freight.

Among other measures, it highlights regular maintenance as a simple way to ensure vehicles continue to meet emissions standards, and argues strongly for maintenance requirements for fuel tax credits to be broadened to include every on-road truck.

We’d argue that getting fuel storage right is at the heart of emissions reduction and vehicle maintenance for transport fleets – here are some of the important points to consider.

Getting the basics right starts with fuel storage

As with anything, an important part of keeping your rig running efficiently and reducing maintenance costs is getting the basics right – and how you store your fuel is one of the often-neglected basics that can make a huge difference to vehicle productivity.

Fuel properties have the greatest effect on the performance of your machinery. What’s more, not only does the health of your fuel storage tank affect the quality of your fuel, but the quality of your fuel also affects the health of your tank.

  • Water ingress: Old and rusted tanks, or poorly sealed tanks, can allow significant amounts of water into your fuel. Water can also get in if the tank design allows, for example, a build-up in the spill bucket that can rush in when the tank is opened for dipping.
  • Corrosion: Corrosion in your tank can cause a number of problems. Corrosion in your tank means chemical reactions, and it’s likely to be a precursor to fuel spoilage through phase separation or to microbial growth.
    Fuel spoilage can affect your tank by:

    • Introducing microbes that create acidic by-products that will corrode your tank.
    • Creating a medium for water to be absorbed.

Best fuel storage options for heavy vehicle efficiency

If you’ve got ageing fuel storage systems, things like regular maintenance, dipping your tanks and draining off excess water are critical. Treating your diesel with a biocide is also a valuable preventative measure.

If your tanks are older and you’re looking to replace them with something that will help you maximise your fuel integrity and your fleet efficiency, here are some of the things you should look for:

  • Meeting Australian Standards and legislative requirements. This is a given – you can find out more about fuel storage legislation in different states here. These days it’s worth looking at self-bunded tank options that give you flexibility, save you money on installation costs and are fully relocatable.
  • Durable materials to minimise rust and corrosion. Some tank materials and fittings will react with your fuel and reduce its efficiency in your vehicle.
  • Easy inspection. Ideally, you should choose a tank that allows for safe and easy fuel testing and easy tank maintenance and cleaning.
  • Choose the right size for your fuel turnover. If you’re in the transport industry, you’ll likely have a steady turnover and your tanks will be filled regularly. Keeping them at the optimum level helps minimise reactions with air and water. It’s worth talking to an expert to determine what tank size will suit you best – don’t just go with what you’ve had in the past. Self-bunded tanks come in sizes up to 110,000-litres.

To find out more about the best options for your fleet, get in touch now at

Top five reasons to buy a self-bunded fuel storage tank

Top five reasons to buy a self-bunded fuel storage tank

You’re looking at fuel storage options for your farm, home or business, but it’s difficult to make a decision. There are a number of variables to consider – capacity, location, maintenance requirements, accessibility and environmental requirements, to name a few.

Self-bunded tanks, which are double-walled or skinned, are an increasingly popular option for a number of reasons.

10000l self bunded tank on the farm, flowers, blue sky

Top 5 benefits of a self bunded tank:

  1. Cost savings: When you buy a self-bunded tank, the savings start with the set-up. Because they incorporate a built-in containment system for ruptures and leaks, self-bunded tanks eliminate the need for specialist civil engineering or building works involved with building an external bund. Typically, buying a self-bunded tank works out at about half the cost of using a single walled tank and building a bund.
  2. Compliance: Buying a self-bunded tank that is certified to Australian Standards is the best way to ensure your fuel storage complies with environmental legislation in your area. A properly maintained bunded tank and refuelling system – including valves, pipes, pumps and hoses – is also the best protection you have against fuel leaks that can cause soil or water contamination and six-figure fines.
  3. Flexibility: A self-bunded tank is a drop-and-go option, so not only can you use your fuel storage immediately, you can safely and easily transport your tank to another site. Smaller portable self-bunded tanks are available in sizes up to 10,000 litres, meaning when your worksite moves with seasonal changes or project demands, your fuel storage can move with it. Our fully transportable Grande tanks store up to 68,000 litres of fuel, for operators with high fuel turnover and storage requirements. Again, there are cost and efficiency benefits because refuelling can take place on or near your worksite, wherever the site is. To make this option even more flexible, F.E.S. TANKS can even provide solutions for hard-to-access areas, like our HULK self-loading system that makes it easy to position and relocate high volume tanks without a crane lift.
  4. Keeping your fuel in great shape: Because self-bunded tanks are easy to maintain and to access for maintenance, it’s easy to keep your tank in great shape – and keeping your tank healthy means your fuel with stay fresh for longer. That in turn means your vehicles will run more efficiently, and your business will benefit.
  5. Security: Self-bunded tanks also offer a high level of built-in security, with a lockable hatch across all access points that can be secured with a heavy padlock when the tank is not in use.

The F.E.S. range of self-bunded tanks comes in sizes from 1000-110,000 litres and offer unbeatable quality and the added advantage of a safe fuel limit which is 10 per cent greater than standard tanks of similar capacity – meaning your tank can go longer between refills.

Call our experts on 1300-651-391 to find out more about our range or discuss your needs and let us build the tank that’s right for you.

How often should you dip your fuel tank?

dipping a fuel tank. fuel dipstick

Dipping your Fuel Storage Tank is Essential

dipping a fuel tank. fuel dipstick

If you’re a fuel supplier, or your business relies on your vehicles, then you can’t afford to take chances with fuel quality.

Maintaining your fuel and your fuel tanks is critical -testing fuel quality regularly will save your business tens of thousands of dollars and keep your cash flowing in the right direction.

F.E.S. TANKS services clients from farmers to major retailers storing up to 1.5 million litres of fuel each day. We’ve distilled the top points from our clients to give you the low-down on how often you should test and why.


Why should I dip my fuel tank?

1. Regular dipping ensures you can detect fuel loss early and take action to stop it.

Dipping your fuel tanks is good business practice because it reconciles the fuel left in your tank with what has been sold out of the bowser, and will quickly pick up any discrepancies. This means you know quickly if you are losing fuel through leakage, theft or poorly calibrated dispensing systems.

A leaking fuel tank not only hits your business where it hurts by reducing your saleable supply – if left undetected it can mean serious safety issues and six-figure fines from the EPA, not to mention a hefty clean-up bill.

Keeping a close watch on the levels in your fuel storage tanks will also keep your fuel in good condition and protect your customers.

Over time, silt builds up in the bottom of all underground storage tanks. A common problem with old or low volume tanks is that when a truck is unloading product and pumping into the tank and a customer is simultaneously using a bowser, this silt is stirred up and makes its way into the customer’s vehicle, causing blocked filters and potentially more serious issues.

Many older underground tanks also have suction lines that run close to the bottom of the tank, increasing the chance of sucking water or silt into vehicles and causing damage. Maintaining proper fuel levels can minimise the risk and keep your fuel in top condition.

2. Fuel dipping can detect water and pollutants in your fuel storage tanks.

If water does get into your fuel supply it can do serious damage to a vehicle, and if you’re a fuel retailer or wholesaler a bad batch can destroy your reputation and leave you to pay significant reparations.

Water contamination in fuel tanks can cause anything from intermittent power loss to engine failure, and the damage done can range from blown injectors to cracked components and cost thousands of dollars to fix. More than that, if you’re a retailer one bad batch can do untold damage to your future sales potential.

Water in fuel also creates an ideal breeding environment for microbes which can degrade your fuel and cause phase separation, particulate contamination and tank damage due to acids produced by the microbes.

So what will I check for when I dip my fuel tank?

Essentially, when you dip you’ll be looking to ensure the fuel that is missing from your tank is equal to the amount you’ve distributed from your bowser or point of sale system.

You can keep a record of your levels with a fuel management system – if you’re supplying your own fleet of vehicles, a good system will give you an early warning if a vehicle is not performing well or needs servicing.

You should also test for water by using a water finding paste on your dip stick. Drain any excess water immediately to keep your fuel fresh and reduce the potential for microbial contamination.

Finally, using a fuel sample test kit is good practice to ensure your fuel is free from microbes and particulates.

How often should I dip?

If you’re a commercial fuel supplier, best business practice is to dip your fuel tanks daily to check fuel levels and test for water contamination. Ideally you would also use a fuel sample test kit regularly and keep up regular inspections of and maintenance on your tanks and fittings.

If you only store a small amount of fuel and use it irregularly, you should always dip your tank and test for water before you fill up. If you store your fuel for long periods, for example for seasonal farm work, it’s worth taking a sample before you fill up machinery to avoid unplanned down time and lost productivity due to damage and equipment failures caused by water or particulates in your supply.

What if I discover a problem?

If you discover a leak in your tank or microbial contamination, F.E.S. TANKS can help you find the best solution for your situation.

If your fuel is contaminated your tank will need to be filled and dosed with a biocide which will help address the problem. Older tanks are more likely to have this issue due to wear and tear over time which allows water leaks, and to issues such as condensation.

If you’re losing fuel and your tank isn’t leaking, we can help address issues like fuel theft with a range of security cameras and fuel management systems.

If it’s time to replace your tanks, F.E.S. TANKS has a complete range of fuel storage systems for sale or hire to suit all fuel storage needs.

Contact our industry experts to find out the best fuel storage options for your business.

Female Truck Drivers

More women driving big rigs is Heather’s dream

Women make up just 1 per cent of Australia’s long-haul truck drivers.

Pilbara Heavy Haulage Girls (PHHG) co-founder Heather Jones has been working to change that statistic since she traded in her office chair for a spot in the driver’s seat 25 years ago, taking her two daughters with her on the road.

female truck driver heather jones in front of pink truck

Heather grew up on a farm, the second eldest of nine children – the family also fostered 57 children over 18 years. She drove her first tractor at age four and loved cars and bikes.

She was working as a secretary at a mining company when the call went out for Haulpak drivers and she answered.

In 2004 she bought her first trucks and set up her own company, Success Transport. Within two years she had 16 drivers and 15-20 trucks servicing the mining, farming and shipping industries in some of Australia’s most remote regions.

She still gets out on the road in addition to her role with PHHG, a not-for-profit which provides professional development and traineeship opportunities for women drivers.

F.E.S. TANKS interviewed Heather about the attractions and challenges of life on the road as a heavy vehicle driver in Australia.

What are the attractions of heavy vehicle driving for women in Australia?

Financial freedom and literal freedom. The entry level to driving a HR truck is very easy and it offers an extremely attractive financial package, dependant on the company you work for.

Once your truck is loaded you are your own boss, with no-one looking over your shoulder. Long haul is a lonely life, but that’s the work I enjoy the most – time to really think and with no phones ringing, no phone service.

Do you still get out on the road?

Yes, as my transport company is a small company I still drive three days a week. If you do come off the road into the office you can forget the real challenges of driving, the long hard slog, and the battle with the motorists who have no idea! As a professional driver you are constantly saving motorists’ lives by taking evasive action so you don’t rear-end them or hit them head-on.

Currently I do a Karratha to Wheatstone run, (the Wheatstone LNG project at Onslow) in a triple road train. At least once a week I do local semi deliveries and I am a pilot escort as well, so the odd job comes up every few weeks.

The longest vehicle I drive is 53.5m (three trailers). So long as I am fit and able I will continue to drive at least two days a week, in an ideal world!

What is the most challenging route you’ve driven?

The most challenging runs would be when you have put in a big week or two or three, and you are doing the long haul home, say from Derby or Broome to Perth (about 2400km), and it just never seems that you are making a mile!

What are the biggest fuel issues for truck drivers in Australia? Have unmanned refuelling stops helped?

The biggest challenge is the availability of fuel after hours and in the areas where we need to access fuel. Ease of access for a triple or quad road train is important too.

Stand-alone unmanned refuelling stops are fabulous. We have a few up here and yes, we use them.

As professional drivers we also need a 24-hour manned fuel stop to go to every 600km or so that has a big parking area for trucks, a quiet drivers’ room and a TV room, as when you are on the road you don’t often keep up with the news. We can get limited ABC radio reception, but every 200km or so you have to tune into a new station.

Also at the manned truck stops we need showers – preferably free if you fuel up there – healthy meal options, washing machines and dryers to clean our clothes.

About 80 per cent of all trucks in Australia are owner-drivers, and we work day to day so the road houses become our home away from home. For example in November 2012 I received a call from one of my dear clients who asked if I could be ready in one hour to head over to a mine 650km away for a week. I was ready in two hours and I came back four months later!

How did Pilbara Heavy Haulage Girls begin?

In 2013 a group of us female truck drivers would meet every six weeks or so to have a drink and socialise. We got talking about the misconceptions about women drivers.

The five of us got together and formed the Pilbara Heavy Haulage Girls to promote the women behind the wheel already, to promote road safety and to open up an opportunity for more women to join us out on the road.

And the response?

We get a lot of support. Last year we had two prime movers donated for 12 months from Volvo Group Australia for us to train new drivers in. We also have three companies we sub-contract to who encourage us to have new drivers while we work. Two of these companies, Joyce Krane and QUBE Energy, have also donated offices and classrooms to us for our training.

Heather and the team at Pilbara Heavy Haulage Girls continue to work to encourage more women into the sector as a solution to looming heavy vehicle driver shortages, with the national road freight task predicted to double from 2010 to 2030.

We’d love to hear about your challenges on the road. Tell us your story below.

Australia’s Liquid Fuel Security

Australian Oil Refinery

Australia’s Economic Future Under Threat

Australian Oil Refinery

Australia’s Diesel Stocks at Lowest Level Ever. This is not sensationalism, this is fact.

Regular readers of our blog will know that we have been warning for some years of the potential for a major shortage in petroleum refined products storage unless some action is being taken to create a Strategic Fuel Energy Reserve in Australia. Something that we highlighted some time ago with our interactive infographic.

“In the month of November 2016 – the latest government figures became available. Diesel consumption cover for the whole of Australia fell to (13) days, the lowest in thirteen years and beyond. Having stocks run down to that level is a huge threat to our economy.” Kevin Hughes – HEH Australian Petroleum Consultancy Co

When stocks are at that level, even a simple refinery breakdown, shipping delay, industrial unrest, act of terrorism in Asia or elsewhere, would be catastrophic for our economy.

Victoria and South Australia regularly ran out of diesel in the latter months of 2016 and have been suffering such run-outs for years.

How long will this be allowed to go on?

Australia is the only country within the IEA & APEC group not to have a Strategic Fuel Energy Reserve.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) condition of its membership is still a long way out of Australia’s reach at (90) days cover for all products.


One can only speculate that the powerful oil industry lobby, which will be advising that everything is ok and nothing needs to be done, is too heavily influencing the government. The reason for such advice is centred around the major oil companies’ self- interest. They do not wish to have to fund or be involved in the management of, as in all other IEA & APEC countries, a Strategic Petroleum Energy Reserve.

Major oil and other importers of petroleum will always, perhaps understandably, unless directed otherwise by government, limit storage within their terminals to meet their own immediate market needs. Even New Zealand has a Strategic Reserve – located in Japan, while Japan itself has regulated that major oil must store at its cost, 40% above its routine requirements as a Strategic Reserve.

We are not necessarily advocating the Japanese model is the most cost effective for Australia, there are several models that can be evaluated, such as:

  • The Government Build additional storage in strategic locations where storage is weakest
  • Adopt the Japanese model and have the oil companies store a defined percentage above their market requirement – perhaps subsidised by the Government.
  • Build additional storage in strategic locations in collaboration with major oil on their land.
  • Appoint a Petroleum Industry Ombudsman, which among other responsibilities, could manage the process, the cost of which could be borne collectively by the oil industry.

Whatever happens, this major threat to our economy and to our way of life, cannot be allowed to continue. The community will not forgive any government that does not take appropriate action to protect its people, and neither it should, particularly with a problem that has been looming and well known for years. Each one of us too, should take responsibility and draw this community threat to our Members of Parliament and whoever else will listen.

To provide continual focus on what we see as an increasing threat to our Australian economy we will each month provide the latest data on ‘days consumption cover’ trends. Our view, for the protection of the Australian economy, the target days cover should be a minimum of (30) days for diesel and petrol, whereas the International Energy Agency (IEA), as a condition of membership requires (90) days cover for all petroleum stocks (including crude oil) and we are not currently meeting even that benchmark.

As will be seen from the latest numbers our fuel security remains at a precarious level.

Mogas Distillate
September 2016 24 days 18 days
November 2016 23 days 13 days
Variance to last yr. + 16.9% – 6.1%

We are still waiting with interest for the now long overdue Federal Government report on the issues raised from its April 2015 Senate Inquiry – which former Government Minister Macfarlane promised would be provided before 2015 year end.

We once again suggest that if the government appointed a Petroleum Industry Ombudsman as we have been variously recommending, the task of managing Australia’s fuel energy security could be one of that office’s stable of duties, its function paid for by the oil industry.

Article reproduced from HEH Australian Petroleum Consultancy Co the monthly update. So powerful was the message we felt it essential to syndicate and distribute in the effort to raise more awareness of the issue.

Generator Safety Checklist – Get the Jump on Storm Season

Generator Safety Checklist for Storm Season feature image.

Get the Jump on Storm Season with our Generator Safety Checklist

IF you’re in Australia, the start of the new year means it’s time to think about preparing your home or business for storm season.

generator safety checklist header image

In December, severe thunderstorms hit south-east Queensland and left thousands of homes and businesses across South Australia without power. South Australia’s September 2016 storms cost business an estimated $367 million due a statewide power outage.

Heat wave conditions sweeping the eastern states in January can prove just as critical, particularly if you have refrigerated stock.

A portable generator can literally be a lifesaver at times like these. In weather emergencies, a generator can help you keep your business running or get your home life back to normal quickly, open communication lines and ensure you can perform essential tasks like pumping water and cooling food.

On the flipside, a generator failure can be catastrophic. It’s worth taking the time now to ensure your generator is in good working order, which includes cleaning out old fuel from tanks and checking for leaks.

If you only use your generator in an emergency, it’s worth taking action to ensure your fuel stays fresh. When fuel sits in tanks unused for months or years it can become stale, and issues like diesel bug and sedimentation can gum up the fuel lines, filters or carburettor.

Most fuel only stays fresh about three months in ideal storage conditions, although diesel can keep for longer. If you’re using old fuel cans or don’t keep your cans fuel, your supply could degrade quickly and leave you in the lurch when a storm hits.

Keep Your Generator in Good Shape with a Generator Safety Checklist

Before storm season, you should:

  • Check and clean or replace your fuel containers. Small jerry cans or drum storage containers are easy enough to inspect and replace. If storing large volumes of diesel it’s a good idea to treat your fuel with a biocide to keep it fresh and stable and ensure maximum efficiency when you need it.
  • Remove your generator from storage, drain the fuel from the tank and dispose of it properly. Ergon Energy recommends you inspect the fuel line for cracks and replace if necessary. Refill the tank with fresh fuel and run the generator. Plug in some appliances, like a light or a hair dryer, to make sure the generator is working properly. If you have any trouble with the generator during this test, take it to be repaired so it is ready for when you need it.
  • Make sure your generator has enough oil. If it’s been used heavily, it might be time for an oil change. Watch a how-to video here.
  • Ensure you have a heavy duty, weatherproof extension cord that is rated for outdoor use. Check that the cord isn’t damaged or worn.
  • Know your generator’s limits. Each generator has a rated wattage which provides a limit on the appliances it will safely power. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for proper use and capacity and don’t try to connect lots of appliances at once.
  • Rotate the use of larger items. Remember, overloading your generator can result in damage to appliances it is powering.

Basic Generator Safety Tips

There are some basic safety tips that will keep you and your family or business safe if you need to use your generator in an emergency.

  • Don’t plug your generator directly into your home’s wiring. Power from a generator connected to a home’s wiring will ‘back feed’ into powerlines, potentially causing a safety hazard for you, your family, neighbours, and energy workers, and causing possible damage to your generator when mains power is restored.
  • Appliances can be plugged directly into the generator but always read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.
  • Use a heavy-duty extension cord rated for outdoor use.
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for earthing the generator.
  • As petrol and diesel-powered generators produce deadly carbon monoxide fumes, always run portable generators outside the house – never inside or in a garage. Keep generators well away from open windows – including your neighbours’ – so deadly exhaust does not enter the home.

A little preparation can make all the difference during storm season, keeping your business operating and ensuring you and your family stay safe and comfortable even when power is lost.

To ensure your generator and your emergency fuel supply are stored safe and sound, give us a call the on 1300-651-391.

Oil Storage for Commercial Businesses

oil-storage. oil drum spilling out oil

Commercial Oil Storage. Don’t slip up!

If you’re in any industry that runs a lot of vehicles or heavy machinery, no doubt you are keen to get the best value out of your fleet – and who isn’t? – there’s a fair chance you’ll at some stage consider designing or equipping a new vehicle maintenance facility for your business.

oil-storage. oil drum spilling out oil

A properly run maintenance depot can help your fleet operate at maximum efficiency with minimum downtime.

Getting your oil and lubricant storage right is one of the critical considerations – we’ve listed some of the key points to note for your transport facility.

The Good Oil – Avoid oil storage slip-ups

Keeping the oil you use in top condition is critical to your operations. Not only that, but getting oil storage wrong can be an expensive mistake.

For many transport operations, the best option is to design an oil storage room for storing bulk oil tanks, intermediate bulk containers (IBCs) and drums.

It’s worth consulting an expert when planning this part of your operation. You’ll need to check the storage regulations in your state to determine whether you need bunded tanks, which are generally considered industry best practice.

Some operators consider constructing a bunded oil room as the most cost-effective option, but these days there are plenty of cost-effective self-bunded waste oil tank options in a variety of capacities that will give you the advantages of versatility and portability without the expensive capital works costs. What’s more, tanks like those in the F.E.S. TANKS range offer extra advantages like easy access for cleaning and testing the quality of your oil and fuel.

Self-bunded tanks vs IBCs

Did you know it is contrary to Australian Standards (AS1940) to store oils for dispensing in intermediate bulk containers (IBCs) unless you have high turnovers and can provide evidence that the container is being changed every 2-3 weeks?

The reason is that IBCs degrade due to UV exposure, making them non-compliant with the Australian Standards and not necessarily the optimum storage option for your products.

Hartex Engineering general manager Varuna Krishnaratna says insurance companies may also refuse to pay out for damage due to fires or oil spills from IBCs being incorrectly used as oil tanks.

The upshot is that if you opt for IBCs you might pay less initially, but the costs could be considerably more in the long-term in regular container replacement, compliance paperwork and containment.

Small volume waste oil tanks are a safe, economical and convenient way to avoid the headaches if you need to store and dispense smaller quantities of oils or lubricants, and importantly these small cube tanks are fully compliant with Australian standards.

F.E.S. Bloc tanks are built from high grade steel with durable fittings. They are all finished with a heavy-duty 300 micron paint finish and are self-bunded with a secondary internal container. These tanks also come with forklift pockets and lifting eyes at each corner, while their cube styling gives maximum volume (more space efficient than drums) with a small footprint.

To find out more give the experts at F.E.S. TANKS a call on 1300-651-391 or get in touch via our web form.