Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service

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Petroleum

Merseyside Fire & Rescue Authority is the Petroleum Licensing Authority for Merseyside. All sites that store and dispense petrol into the fuel tank of an internal combustion engine require a licence; this includes sites whether petroleum is for sale or not.

All licences have conditions attached which the petroleum retailer must not contravene. Licences are renewed annually and payment must be received prior to the renewal date. Should a licensee wish to transfer the licence then an application to transfer form must be completed and forwarded to Merseyside Fire & Rescue Authority at least 28 days before transfer.

For information on Petroleum and Petroleum Licences please refer to The Red Guide: www.cfoa.org.uk/download/13605 (link is a PDF document hosted on CFOA)

For any information relating to Petroleum Licences that is not available within the Guidance then please send your licensing request to csadmin@merseyfire.gov.uk

For information relating to petroleum that is not available within the Guidance Section please send your request to petroleum@merseyfire.gov.uk

Storage

Merseyside Fire & Rescue Authority is the Petroleum Licensing Authority and therefore has responsibility for the enforcement of petroleum regulations at petrol filling sites across Merseyside.

Petrol is a highly flammable liquid and designated as a dangerous substance. At room temperature its vapours are heavier than air.

Petrol vapour when mixed with air can form an explosive atmosphere at very low concentrations; and has a Flammability range of 1.3% – 7.1%

The Lower Explosive Limit (LEL) is a concentration of 1.3%.

That is to say; where petrol vapours amount to 1.3% concentration in an atmosphere and an ignition source is present, an explosion will occur. Where the concentration is less than 1.3% the mixture is described as ‘too lean’ and even if an ignition source is present, the vapours will not ignite.

The Upper Explosive Limit (UEL) is a concentration of 7.1%

That is to say; where petrol vapours amount to upto 7.1% concentration in an atmosphere and an ignition source is present, an explosion will occur. Where the concentration is greater than 7.1% the mixture is described as ‘too rich’ and even if an ignition source is present, the vapours will not ignite.

The storage of petrol other than at licensed sites should therefore be kept to an absolute minimum and should never be stored in a house or living accommodation.

Domestic Storage

Legislation dictates that where petrol is stored for domestic purposes then storage must be in approved containers that are appropriately labelled and stopped and that the total amount stored should not exceed two 5 litre plastic containers or 10 litre metal containers. The total amount stored should not exceed 20 litres in total. It is important that even small amounts of petrol are stored safely and securely in a well ventilated area away from heat and ignition sources.

Petrol Retailers – Licensing Conditions

As a condition of their licence Petrol retailers must ensure that where petrol is dispensed into containers on their forecourts these must be approved containers and Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service strongly recommend that retailers allow no more than 2 containers are filled by any individual. Fire Safety Inspectors will be visiting petrol filling stations to ensure that filling stations are complying with licence conditions

Further advice and information is available from your local district fire safety and petroleum inspector or from the Health Protection Agency www.hpa.org.uk/webc/HPAwebFile/HPAweb_C/1202487106979 (link is a PDF document hosted on HPA)

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