A resident walking his dog past a Union Oil Co. facility recently noticed what he thought was an increase in the number of 55-gallon drums at the Brea site.
The resident’s report piqued the interest of city officials. Friday, Union Oil, a subsidiary of Unocal Corp., was the first to report an inventory of its materials at the request of the city, which plans to ask all industries that store hazardous materials to inventory their stock.
“Because of the focus of the community and the need for fire service to get a handle on this potential problem,” Brea began a program on Sept. 1 of annual hazardous-use monitoring permits, Acting Fire Chief Bud Moody said.
To improve monitoring of hazardous materials in the city, the Fire Deparment is asking industries what hazardous materials they store and how they are stored, Moody said. Previously, the city did not require inventories of exact materials and quantities, he said.
The city is charging $25.50 for annual permits--one of four Fire Department service charges instituted this month. Brea also is looking at a hazardous materials ordinance that would include computerizing company inventories and regulating storage of such materials.
Brea’s first report, from Union Oil, showed nothing out of the ordinary, Moody said.
Another 12 to 15 large heavy industries are expected to follow Union Oil and report on their hazardous materials, Moody said. In Brea, the program will affect about 50 industries and possibly another 250 that store or use flammable liquids, he said.