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U.S. EPA fines Chico, Calif. company $6,000 for oil spill prevention violations

Release Date: 03/20/2008
Contact Information: Wendy Chavez, 415/947-4248,

SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently fined Warner Petroleum, Inc., $6,000 for oil spill prevention violations at its facility at 310 Nord Ave. in Chico, Calif.

During a routine inspection in April 2007, the EPA found that Warner Petroleum lacked secondary containment around its oil storage area needed to prevent oil from being discharged from the facility in the event of a tank or piping failure. Uncontained spills from the Warner Petroleum facility could potentially contaminate Big Chico Creek, which leads to the Sacramento River and eventually into the Pacific Ocean.

“It is critical that facilities such as Warner take the measures needed to prevent the release of oil into the environment,” said Keith Takata, the EPA’s Superfund Division director for the EPA’s Pacific Southwest region. “Discharges of oil into waterways can be prevented with proper planning and spill containment.”

The Warner Petroleum facility had incomplete secondary containment for four fixed above-ground storage containers, two 5,000 gallon portable storage containers, a 550-gallon waste oil tank, and a warehouse where approximately 80 55-gallon drums and 16 portable storage totes are located.

Oil spills and other contamination from onshore sources can pollute and harm ecosystems. The EPA requires oil storage facilities to have spill prevention plans and measures in place to prevent oil from being discharged into waterways. Warner Petroleum agreed to pay the penalty and has installed the necessary secondary containment within its facility.

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