Donegal County Council is urging homeowners to check the condition of their oil tanks following a rise in harmful spillages.
The council has received an unprecedented number of reports of spillages of domestic home heating oil in recent weeks. The spillages harm property and water-courses and require expensive and time consuming clean-up operations.
With cheaper oil prices at present, the council says it is apparent that some tanks are being filled to levels which cause cracking or structural damage and there is anecdotal evidence that additional second hand tanks are being purchased, which may be unfit for purpose.
The Council would like to advise homeowners to carefully check the condition of their tank prior to filling it and to inspect it again immediately, and for a period afterwards, particularly at any joints in the pipework which could give rise to leakage.
The spillage of oil in this way has been known to:
- Enter into foundations and floors requiring very costly remedial works, possibly affecting neighbouring properties as well,
- Penetrate underground plastic drinking water pipes, tainting the water and leaving an oily odour for a sustained period until soil and pipes are removed & replaced.
- Cause a fish kill and impact on public amenities such as bathing waters and aquaculture sites in coastal areas.
Anyone who identifies an oil spill should contact the County Council via the Customer Contact Centre, 074-9153900 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org for further advice.