Bunds are enclosures around tanks or drums that provide emergency containment in the event of failure. A well designed bund will stop hazardous materials leaking to ground or surface water. Regulators, such as the EPA and the Northern Ireland Environmental Agency, require that bunds be tested after construction and then at at regular intervals to ensure that they are fit for purpose. Environmental Efficiency can undertake the testing of all types of bunds using a range of approved protocols including BS8007 and CIRIA163.
The most common type of bund consists of a concrete wall and base surrounding one or more tanks. To ensure fitness for purpose there are rules for the capacity of bunds and their construction.
It should be realised that not all hazardous materials require bunding. Whether to bund or not to bund can be determined by a risk assessment using the Source-Pathway-Receptor model. However, a simplified risk assessment can be carried out using the Water Hazard Class of the substance and the volume of the substance. Environmental Efficiency can carry out such risk assessments.
Where the bund has been in service for some time, the EPA rules allow for either a water retention test or a visual inspection. Environmental Efficiency can undertake a preliminary inspection at no charge in order to advise you of the most safe and practical method of testing compliant with the regulators rules.
Where the bund is newly built and not yet in service, it is required to be tested in accordance with the design code used for construction, this is most likely to be either BS8007 (although this is now withdrawn) or CIRIA 163. For both design codes this means a water retention test and again Environmental Efficiency can undertake this.