OMV NZ operates nine tanks in Taranaki, across two tank farms - Omata Tank Farm and Paritutu Tank Farm. These tanks hold condensate (light oil) and some crude oil which is piped and trucked in from OMV NZ’s natural gas fields and other businesses around Taranaki.
Zero Harm, No Losses
Safety is the heart of our business and our vision of Zero Harm, No Losses is our number one priority – this means no harm to people or the environment.
Under New Zealand health and safety legislation, the tank farm facilities are recognised as Major Hazard Facilities due to the quantities of hydrocarbon products that we safely store. These regulations are administered and monitored by WorkSafe.
Major incidents are considered as 'low likelihood, high consequence' events and we have safety cases in place for both Omata and Paritutu tank farms.
It is a legal requirement under the Health and Safety at Work (Major Hazard Facilities) Regulations 2016 to have a safety case for all Major Hazard Facilities.
A safety case demonstrates to our WORKERS and WORKSAFE that OMV:
- Know what the major incidents are on our facilities and the consequences associated with them
- Have robust controls in place to prevent or mitigate the effects of a major incident
- Have emergency response plans in place, supported by suitable resources e.g. trained people and equipment
Our Tank Farm safety cases consist of:
- A description of our operations and what we do, including the materials we handle
- A summary of our Health, Safety, Security and Environment (HSSE) Management System
- A section that outlines our major incidents (what can go wrong) and an evaluation of the consequences arising from these
- A summary of the controls in place to manage major incident risks
- An overview of our emergency response processes
- A statement of commitment from our most senior officer that health and safety risks at our facilities have been managed, so far as is reasonably practicable
Our Tank Farm safety cases are updated every five years or if we have a significant change in operations or risk profile.
The purpose of the safety assessment is to demonstrate that:
- A detailed and systematic process has been applied to identify all potential Major Incident Hazards and Major Incidents
- A detailed and systematic assessment has been undertaken of the likelihood and consequences of each major incident, including suitable physical effects modelling to understand the impacts onsite and offsite
- For each major incident hazard, effective barriers and controls are in place to prevent the event occurring and to minimise the consequences should it do so
- Risk reduction measures have been assessed and all reasonably practical measures implemented or a plan is in place to ensure they are put in place
The safety assessment process is a team approach, with input from operations, maintenance, engineering, and HSSE personnel, as well as key contractors.
A Major Hazard Facility (MHF) means a facility that WorkSafe has designated as a lower tier major hazard facility or an upper tier major hazard facility under the Health and Safety at Work (Major Hazard Facilities) Regulations 2016.
Under these regulations, a MHF needs to identify and evaluate the potential major incidents at the facility and put in place suitable controls to manage these.
What is a major incident?
- An uncontrolled event at a major hazard facility
- Loss of containment, fire, explosion etc
- Involves a specified hazardous substance, for OMV these are condensate, crude oil, naphtha, natural gas
- Exposes multiple people to a serious health and safety risk (including death) through exposure to the hazardous substance
OMV's potential major incidents
- Loss of containment of condensate / crude / naphtha arising in fire / explosion:
- Incoming and export pipelines
- Service areas / pump-raft areas
- Storage tanks
- Road tanker unloading facilities (EIL Tank Farm only)
- Domestic gas supply release from hot water heater fuel supply (EIL Tank Farm only)
- Storage tank fire
- Escalation from event / activity outside of tank farms e.g. other MHF operator emergency
OMV controls major incidents through three types of controls:
- Competent workers who are fit to work
- Good process safety culture in the organisation
- Suitably designed and constructed plant
- Plant maintained to a good condition
- Safety Critical Elements (SCEs) and assurance tasks. SCEs are items or equipment at a major hazard facility that are intended to be the last lines of defence against a major incident and its consequences. SCEs include:
- Prevention Measures
- Primary containment e.g. tanks, piping
- Pressure relief systems
- Overfill protection systems
- Ignition control measures
- Emergency shutdown systems
- Mitigation Measures
- Secondary containment
- Fire and gas detection systems
- Fire protection systems
- Prevention Measures
- Well defined management systems that are communicated to our workers
Safety by design
See the safety features of our tank farms in the aerial images below:
OMV HSSE Management System
The OMV Health, Safety, Security, and Environment (HSSE) Management System is made up of 12 Elements, which follow a ‘Plan, Do, Check, Act’ process as shown below:
The management system is designed to ensure:
- Leadership commitment and visibility is demonstrated across all of our operations
- The workforce we have in place is competent, motivated and empowered to perform, as well as being physically and mentally fit for work
- Hazards and risks are identified for all our activities and suitable controls in place, which are continually monitored to ensure they remain effective
- Projects and engineering design is performed in accordance with recognised good practice and by competent workers
- Work is controlled and risk assessed through a formal Permit to Work system
- Contracted services are aligned with our HSSE expectations
- All incidents and near-misses are investigated and that lessons learned are shared across our business
- Stakeholders are identified and kept informed
- Emergency response processes are in place and sufficiently resourced, as well as tested regularly to ensure they work.
- HSSE performance is monitored and improvement opportunities identified
Our facilities are designed to 'fail safe' should a major incident occur. The emergency shutdowns system in place activate either automatically (through a protection system) or manually. Manual activation can take place either on site (when the tank farms are manned) or remotely from the OMV Remote Control Room.
OMV operate a roster to ensure trained emergency response personnel are always available to respond to an emergency. We also perform regular drills and exercises to ensure our emergency response team remain competent and to check for gaps in our processes.
We regularly engage with emergency services to ensure they remain familiar with our facilities and emergency response processes. We also adapt and refine our emergency response processes to incorporate feedback and recommendations from emergency services.
Most accidental releases of hydrocarbons will NOT result in a fire or explosion as they are contained on site in areas designed to contain flammable materials and will be cleaned up quickly to prevent any escalation or damage to the environment.
However, in the unlikely event of a fire, smoke and flames may be evident from our facilities. In these cases, please stay away from our tank farms so emergency services and emergency response personnel can perform the necessary actions to bring the situation under control.
Potential offsite impact during an major incident at the tank farms may include:
- potential visible smoke and flames
- potential for soot to be carried with wind
- offsite odour dependent on wind direction and strength
- temporary health effects; eg, breathing difficulty, eye irritation from smoke effects
- potential disruption locally due to emergency services activity, road closure, and potential evacuations
Further information on an emergency event and actions to take will be provided to the community via this webpage. In extreme circumstances, the Taranaki Civil Defence and Emergency Management (CDEM) team will issue messages to the community with key instructions.
The general advice is:
- remain indoors and close windows and doors
- consult the OMV NZ webpage and local radio for information
- stay away from the tank farms and surrounding beach / Paritutu Rock areas
- adhere to road closures/diversions
- self-evacuate out of the area if you feel more comfortable
- seek medical attention if you feel impacted
In the extremely unlikely event that you need to evacuate your home this will be managed by NZ Police and Taranaki Civil Defence and Emergency Management. A Civil Defence and Emergency Management emergency mobile alert will send messages about the emergency to mobile phones capable of receiving this.
Read the Tank Farm brochure for a summary of control measures in place:
OMV NZ works closely with emergency services in the preparation and testing of emergency response plans to ensure response actions can be implemented efficiently and effectively in an emergency.
In the unlikely event of an emergency at one of our facilities, emergency services will assist with emergency response on site, as well as any evacuation of the facilities and neighbours, if required.
If you notice any situation at our facilities that looks suspicious or unsafe, please contact emergency services on 111 or OMV NZ on 0800 456 800.