Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

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Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby KiKi Maroon » Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:02 am

Hi all!
I'm trying to get together all our lose ends and am a question. Our camp will have a few generators, so I'm looking at fuel storage. Some of the rules listed on the fuel storage page says-

-Any collection of 20 gallons or more of flammable liquid must be kept within a secondary containment area. The containment method can be as simple as a petroleum-resistant tarp rolled up to provide a berm.
-A supply of cat litter or fuel absorbent should be kept on hand near any spills basin.
-A sufficient amount of dry chemical fire extinguishers must be kept visible and available near the storage location of any liquid fuel.

So
1) I googled "petroleum-resistant tarp " and didn't find anything (though the burning man page saying this is one of the first listed). So are all tarps petroleum-resistant? Or what exactly should I be looking for?
2) Berm. So, it needs to be rolled up and wrapped around the container? Like a donut?
3) How much cat litter per 20 gallons is sufficient?
4) How many extinguishers per 20 gallons?

Sorry if these are silly questions. I swear I googled and searched the boards. If I missed it, sorry!
XoXo
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby Bob » Thu Jul 19, 2012 2:20 am

Wow, I sympathize with anyone trying to decipher that gibberish.

In the past on the eplaya I'd just suggest telephoning the Burning Man office about vaguely stated specific requirements, but nowadays we have a number of people called Moderators who seem more than happy to pull something out of their collective ass that may or may not be accurate or useful. Let's see what happens!
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby Bounce530 » Thu Jul 19, 2012 8:49 am

TomServo wrote:Pickles are cucumbers soaked in EVIL!
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby Ugly Dougly » Thu Jul 19, 2012 10:16 am

I'll bet most people are just using generic plastic tarps.
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby BBadger » Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:19 pm

Bob is right: you're going to get speculative ideas on what is meant. Here are mine, though I'm not a chemical safety engineer in any way.

I'd just design the fuel depot area much in the same manner as an evap pond. Mount the "tarp" (see what I mean below) inside a frame of 2x4s so the edges are elevated the edges (the "berm"), and place the fuel barrels, etc. in the middle, maybe on a pallet placed over a small tarp (so it doesn't damage the berm plastic) to keep it off the surface. Designate a pouring/siphoning area so you don't walk over the "tarp" and possibly damage it, and put a pile of "kitty litter" there to reduce splashes.

Most of that is merely to ensure that whatever small amounts spill out of the fuel container during siphoning/pouring, as well as small leaks, will not reach the playa. Containment for a major spill will be impossible, so it's mostly just small spill/drip-mitigation. How much of whatever is needed will depend on the amount, geometry, etc. of the fuel storage. Exact quantities--I have no idea. It's like exact instructions for evap ponds. The fire extinguishers--I don't know how effective those would be for something major, but still good to have around just in case.

For a tarp, I think neoprene tarps are gasoline inert, but they're pretty damn expensive ($120 for 6'x8'). You can probably do fine using a polyethylene tarp or sheeting as a barrier to contain the drips, etc. as polyethylene has decent chemical resistance to gasoline and other chemicals; it's also cheap, and you can deploy lots of it as needed. I don't think vinyl tarps are up to the task of chemical containment, but putting some sort of plastic tarp below the entire containment area might be a good idea just to keep the depot separated from the playa surface directly.

It'd also be a good idea to keep the fuel shaded so that it doesn't vent too much.
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby Bob » Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:25 pm

Pallets or a sheet of 3/4 or thicker plywood might help if you're using 55 gallon drums.

(eta: oh, you said that)
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby KiKi Maroon » Thu Jul 19, 2012 5:43 pm

Oh my god, thank you so much! It really does get confusing, but I'm trying my hardest to make sure it's all done right. We actually have a lot of pallets, so not only does that make a lot of sense, but is easy for me to do too. Thank you!!!
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby motskyroonmatick » Thu Jul 19, 2012 10:05 pm

One of the first things I do once I have reached the relative area where I will be camping is to loosen the caps of the fuel containers I bring. I loosen them just enough so they can breathe(this can be a fine art with containers that have spouts that are stored inside the container). Plastic air tight containers will swell dramatically if the sun is allowed to shine on them. Bursting is not out of the question. Keep fuel containers in the shade and don't allow them to build internal pressure. I've never had one spill on the ground. I like to use 5 gallon containers so that if there is a failure of one it is not a huge failure. I definitely check the condition of the containers multiple times a day and I look for ways to reduce fuel use.
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby KiKi Maroon » Fri Jul 20, 2012 1:42 pm

Thats a good idea. It definitely seems like several 5 gallon containers is the way to go.
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby brcprincess » Sat Jul 21, 2012 9:26 pm

Some tips for people bringing extra fuel for their RVs and generators:

You should to take into account increased entry and exodus times, in addition to the gas you will use for your generator.

We fill four 5 gallon fuel containers. We also fill up our RV tank prior to leaving the highway - do NOT count on getting gas in locations like Gerlach between the highway and the Playa as the gas stations have often sold out over the past few years.

If you're sitting in the entry line for 4+ hours (our friends were in it for 7 hours last year) you are going to burn thru the gas. By the time you get to the Playa, you should be able to put two of the 5 gallon fuel containers into your RV tank.

You can use the remaining two fuel containers to top off the RV tank as you use the generator.

I had no idea about the fuel storage rules. We alway left our fuel containers in a shaded area and made sure to release the fumes daily (the fuel expands in the heat and the fuel container will do likewise). You don't want the pressure to build up. Within a couple of days of arriving you should have been able to put all 20 gallons into your RV tank, then you dont have any more issues with storage.
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby trilobyte » Sun Jul 22, 2012 5:50 am

My understanding is that a new set of fuel storage and delivery guidelines is supposed to be coming, but I haven't seen it yet. I'll try and check on the status of that sometime next week, in the meantime you can email fuel@burningman.com with your questions.
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby NewDeuce » Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:36 pm

Keep in mind that the rolled up tarp only needs to hold the volume of one container.
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Re: Fuel Storage Question. I'm confused!!

Postby EspressoDude » Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:56 pm

from burningman.com search fuel storage: http://www.burningman.com/installations/fuel_storage.html

note that containment is 110% of ALL fuel, not just one container.

This is likely in response to some camps getting red on the moop map for fuel spillage, and associated fire hazards.

also note that Nevada law prohibits transporting more than 110 gallons in any vehicle without proper signage, permits, insurance, and probably a commercial drivers license with hazmat endorsement.
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