The Rules of the Game

Fall has finally arrived here in the DC area and that means one thing, football season! In addition to being a Washington Redskins fan, I also get to spend my weekends coaching my son’s little league football team. At a game this weekend, I saw for the first time in 14 years of coaching a penalty called for “assisting the runner.” Yes, it is really a rule; it is just not called very often. That got me to thinking about rules and how and when they change.

For aviation businesses, the rule changes over the last eight years regarding Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasures (SPCC) Plans have been enough to leave your head spinning. With a major revision to the rules occurring in 2002 and additional revisions in 2006 and 2009, all before the 2002 changes become effective, it is no wonder one of the most frequent questions I get is: Should I have an SPCC plan? Many aviation business leaders are left scratching their heads, wondering if they need new plans or if the ones they have are sufficient to meet the new rules.

Let me take a moment to help clear the matter up — at least slightly. If your facility stores aviation fuel, above ground, in a quantity greater than 1,320 gallons, yes, you must have an SPCC plan. Then, questions such as which set of rules are currently applicable to your facility, must your plan be certified by a professional engineer, can you use the SPCC Plan Template, what type of training must be conducted, what records must be retained and many more must be answered. 

In an effort to help sort out the varied rules, rule changes and compliance date changes, NATA is hosting a Webinar on SPCC rule compliance as part of its E-Learn Series. The webinar will be held on November 2 from 2:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m. (Eastern Time) and will cover:

  • The history of the SPCC rule along with all the latest changes
  • Physical Storage requirements
  • Written SPCC Plan requirements
  • Routine tasks required by SPCC Plans
  • Spill Response
  • A quick summary of other environmental regulations that affect aviation facilities

The speaker for this E-Learn webinar will be George S. Gamble, PE from 2G Environmental, LLC. George brings extensive knowledge and experience in SPCC compliance for aviation facilities right to your office for only $49.95. You can register for this webinar now by clicking here.

While getting a yellow flag thrown for assisting the runner is not likely on an airport ramp, not fully understanding or complying with SPCC rules can be costly in the event of an Environmental Protection Agency audit. I encourage all aviation business owners, managers or supervisors to register for this valuable webinar today.

Submitted by Michael France NATA Director of Regulatory Affairs,

Visit or return to NATA’s site:

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