Question: It rains a lot where I’m located, and the rain often comes into contact with jet fuel, gas and hydraulic oil on the ground. What can I use to surround the puddles of rainwater and absorb the oil and fuel so it doesn’t get down a storm drain?
Luckily, there are special static-dissipative absorbents for situations just like yours. These products pass ANSI/ESD STM11.11 and MIL-STD-3010C testing methods for static decay and surface resistivity, making them perfect for working around flammable liquids and their vapors.
If fuel isn’t your main problem and you’re looking to absorb oil from your rainwater, there are also special oil-only absorbents to soak up the oil but not the water.
The first step is to surround the puddle(s) of rainwater with a Static Dissipative or Oil-Only Absorbent Sock that will capture and prevent any fuel or oil from escaping the puddle. Absorbent socks aren’t very heavy, though, and should be tethered so they don’t float away.
Once the puddle is contained, you can add Stat-Mat or standard Oil-Only Absorbent Pads to the center of the puddle to capture any oil or fuel that doesn’t make its way to the edge. Depending on your situation and the size of your puddle, you may find that a sock does the job alone, or vice versa with a mat. And since both products are water-repellent, you don’t have to worry about wasting absorbency on rainwater — they only absorb fuels and oil-based liquids.
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You should also consider ways to prevent the oil and fuel from getting to the ground in the first place. If you’re storing these materials in containers, you can place the containers inside a covered spill pallet to prevent any rainwater from reaching them. You could also capture leaks and drips as they happen with an absorbent mat or pillow under problem areas.
Finally, if you’re worried about oil and fuel getting down your storm drains, you can use a drain cover to completely seal them off or use filtering products to absorb small amounts of fuels and oils while it’s raining or during fluid transfer.
You tell us: What other questions do you have about absorbing oil and fuel or protecting storm drains? Let us know in the comments section below!