Spill Prevention, Control & Countermeasure (SPCC) Plans


If your facility uses substantial amounts of oil aboveground or belowground, your operation could be subject to the Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasure (SPCC) Rule. The primary objective of this rule is to contain oil discharges and prevent those discharges from reaching navigable waters and adjoining shorelines. Specific requirements apply based on the amount of oil a facility uses, so understanding the guidelines about complying with regulations is essential.

Continue reading to learn more about the SPCC rule, developing the right containment plan and how Solidification Products International, Inc. can help.

What Is the Purpose of an SPCC Plan?

The SPCC Rule specifically addresses oil spills that can harm natural resources and endanger public health. Besides posing a risk to the environment and human health, these spills result in expensive cleanup costs, potential fines and other liabilities.

Facilities not related to transportation that use, process, refine, store or consume oil may need to comply with the SPCC Rule. Examples of these applications range from oil drilling facilities and refineries to waste treatment plants and railroad operations with oil tankers. Oil-related products include fuel oil, petroleum, sludge and oil refuse.

Who Is Qualified for an SPCC Plan?

Three types of SPCC plans exist — Qualified Tier 1, Qualified Tier 2 and Nonqualified. The plan you must follow depends on your facility’s storage capacity, your storage container sizes and whether your operation has a history of previous oil spills. While each plan is different, some of the common features between each include:

  • Operating procedures to prevent oil spills from occurring.
  • Countermeasures to contain, clean up and minimize the effects of an oil spill.
  • Control measures to prevent a spill from reaching navigable waters.

SPCC plans must also contain basic information like the location, facility owner, emergency contacts and proximity to United States waters. Other pertinent information in these plans includes tank identification names, numbers, specific contents and capacities.

Qualified Tier 1

Tier 1 plans apply to SPCC-qualified facilities that store between 1,320 and 10,000 gallons aboveground on-site, including oil in drums, totes or equipment. Facilities following this plan must not have a single tank with a capacity exceeding 5,000 gallons. In addition, a facility cannot have an oil discharge into navigable waters over the previous three years.

Qualified Tier 1 plans are short, concise and relatively simple to implement. Any self-certified individual using best engineering practices can create this type of plan.

Qualified Tier 2

Qualified Tier 2 plans are nearly identical to Qualified Tier 1 plans. The only difference is that a facility must implement a Tier 2 plan when using single storage tanks or containers with capacities greater than 5,000 gallons. Like Qualified Tier 1 plans, the Tier 2 plans are self-certifiable as long as they adhere to regulations within the SPCC Rule.


Facilities with over 10,000 gallons of oil or related products on-site must implement a Nonqualified containment plan. Although anyone can draft the plan documents, a professional engineer (PE) must approve and certify them. Besides ensuring compliance, the responsibilities of the PE involve visiting and examining a Nonqualified facility to ensure compliance with the SPCC Rule’s requirements.

How to Certify an SPCC Plan

Qualified Tier 1 and Tier 2 plans are self-certifiable, while a professional engineer must certify a Nonqualified plan. When certifying plans, the plan creator or PE must ensure that:

  • They are familiar with SPCC requirements.
  • They have examined the facility.
  • The plan contains sound engineering practices.
  • The plan indicates testing procedures for inspections.
  • The plan does not deviate from SPCC Rule requirements.
  • Facility managers or owners have approved the plan.
  • The facility has successfully implemented the plan.

How SPI Can Help

Implementing effective containment solutions is one of the best ways to stay compliant with the SPCC Rule. Solidification Products International, Inc. is an industry leader in developing products that help control oil leaks and spills. For decades, operations worldwide have relied on our products to comply with environmental regulations, including the SPCC Rule.

SPI technology works well for oil containment projects and is customizable for applications like transformers or specialized oil tanks. Our Petro-Pipes®Petro-Plugs® and Petro-Barriers™ deliver adequate protection from oil discharge and are acceptable containment methods under SPCC Rule requirements.

Discover More With Solidification Products International, Inc.

SPI offers the most technologically advanced and cost-effective oil spill containment products to operations across a broad industry range. We’re a proudly veteran-owned company that’s been exceeding client expectations since 1999. Our engineering team looks forward to helping you create a containment solution customized to your applications.

Contact us online or call 203-484-9494 today to get started.

Would you like to share?