Secondary containment is an important financial safeguard that helps plant operators mitigate the risks associated with chemical spills. With containment options such as open-top vertical tanks and concrete basins, rain, debris and other environmental factors can lead to potential equipment damage and contamination of any chemical that might get into the interstitial space.
For these reasons, the initial costs of investing in a SAFE-Tank system versus other secondary containment options, not to mention the potential lifetime savings on maintenance costs, is well worth it.
Concrete Containment and Open-Top Tanks
Concrete structures are one of the oldest and most common forms of secondary containment. However, organizations often fail to plan for the maintenance cost of re-coating the concrete. On average, coating maintenance can cost several thousand dollars every five years or so based on the condition of the coating that is installed.
To meet standards for secondary containment most agencies require the containment system to hold 110% of the primary tank. An example would be a 6,500 gallon tank which would require a 7,150 gallon rotationally molded open-top containment tank or large concrete containment structure. Additional costs can be incurred with open-top tanks due to the cost of trash and rain water removal or contamination. Liquid inside the containment system can lead to false readings on an ultrasonic leak detector. If the chemical does happen to leak into the containment, in most cases it is contaminated , which means loss of chemical and loss of time.
The Value of SAFE-Tanks
The SAFE-Tank containment and storage system functions as a "tank within a tank," otherwise known as a double-walled tank system. Since it is built from high density cross-linked polyethylene that is capable of holding the chemical without issue, there is no need to designate a large area for a concrete containment structure. In the case of a spill, the risks of damage or lost product is mitigated with very little downtime.
The value of a SAFE-Tank includes a naturally built-in 110 percent secondary containment tank without compromise to chemical quality in case of a spill. Even if there is damage to the inner tank, the tank works to equalize the liquid level and can be used until the chemicals inside have been depleted. It essentially becomes a single wall tank at this point until repaired. This means tank repairs are not emergencies, saving you critical time and money.
The dome structure of a SAFE-Tank prevents water and debris from entering the containment tank due to its mushroom like design, which eliminates the risk of false positives for leak detection. The SAFE-Tank also offers spurt-protection due to the completely encased sidewall, which mitigates the risk of an injured employee possibly getting chemical sprayed on them.
The SAFE-Tank can be double wall piped from the tank to wherever you want the pipe to terminate using the industry’s only true double wall transition fitting. This important fitting drains the primary tank through the containment tank while acting as a secondary containment around the fitting. You can mount a 6” flange to the outside of the transition fitting and run double wall piping while keeping everything fully contained.
Not Having a SAFE-Tank Is Not Worth It
In the event of a chemical spill or naturally occurring contamination from rainwater or debris, the cost of containment, such as a concrete basin or an open-top system, can well exceed the cost of a SAFE-Tank. Proper disposal of leaked or contaminated chemicals includes the rental of a tanker truck, which can range from $5,000 to $10,000 or more depending on a customer's geographic location and chemical being stored.
With an open-top tank or concrete system, total loss of all contained chemicals is typical. The cost of replacement chemicals can range from $1 to $10 per gallon or more for organizations buying in bulk.
For more information on how SAFE-Tanks can save money, download our informative SAFE-Tank guide.