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EPA Issues Penalty Against Ultramar Diamond Shamrock

Release Date: 12/9/1999
Contact Information: For more information contact the Office of External Affairs at (214) 665-2200.

     On Nov. 24, 1999, Ultramar Diamond Shamrock agreed to pay the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) $375,866 in settlement of EPA's January 1999 administrative penalty order for violations of federal and state underground storage tank regulations.

     Ultramar Diamond Shamrock, headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, was cited for its failure to report and investigate suspected releases, conduct adequate leak detection and monitor corrosion protection systems on metal components of the underground storage tanks containing gasoline.

     "One gallon of gasoline can contaminate approximately 5 million gallons of drinking water. Since over half of the drinking water in the United States is obtained from ground water, releases from underground storage tanks must be prevented," EPA Regional Administrator Gregg Cooke said.

     A majority of the violations occurred while the stations were owned by Total Petroleum, Inc. Ultramar Diamond Shamrock acquired these stations and has been cooperating with EPA to correct the violations and prevent them from occurring in the future.

     Failure to comply with the underground storage tank requirements can allow leaks from tanks and/or piping to go undetected and contaminate the soil and groundwater, or cause explosions. Facilities must also provide and maintain corrosion protection of metal components of the underground storage tanks to prevent releases.  Federal underground storage tank regulations became effective Dec. 22, 1988.

     At the time of the EPA inspections, Ultramar Diamond Shamrock used a method of release detection know as Statistical Inventory Reconciliation (SIR). In many instances, this method did not conclusively report if a tank system was leaking.

     Ultramar has 60 days from the effective date of the Consent Agreement and Consent Order to pay the penalty.  Ultramar has also agreed to comply with an enhanced reporting schedule to EPA for one year.

     The following locations were cited in the original complaint:

     1902 Fayetteville Road, Van Buren, Ark. 72656
     807 South Caraway, Jonesboro, Ark. 72401  
     8810 Garland Road, Dallas, Texas 75218
     702 West Centerville Road, Garland, Texas 75041    
     1201 Miller Road, Garland, Texas 75401
     5950 Broadway Road, Garland, Texas 75041
     3325 Town East Blvd, Mesquite, Texas 75149
     1145 I-30 East, Mesquite, Texas 75150
     3730 Hwy 80, Mesquite, Texas 75182
     102 Arapaho Road, Richardson, Texas 75080
     2804 Ridge Road, Rockwall, Texas 75087

     EPA, in partnership with the states, enforces all underground storage tank regulations to prevent and detect leaks before they impact our human health and the environment.

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