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F> Flammable and Combustible Liquids


Flammable and combustible liquids stored above ground represent a potential source of contaminants that may cause significant
environmental damage. A bund is designed to contain spillages and leaks from hazardous liquids to minimise the risk of pollution.
Bunding also protects personal safety and reduces damage to property.
This fact sheet provides information that may assist operators in designing and constructing bunding for a flammable
& combustible liquids store.

The Law Materials

The Dangerous Goods Safety Management Regulation 2001 • The bund must be built out of materials that are resistant
requires all premises storing flammable and combustible to fire and impervious to, and compatible with, the liquids
liquids (class 3), in quantities above the minor storage to be contained.
provisions of AS1940, to be licensed by Local Government. • It shall be sufficiently impervious to retain spillage and to
The occupier of a premises is legally responsible for ensuring enable recovery of any such spillage.
that all bunding onsite complies with the conditions on the • Any pipe that passes through a bund shall be designed to
operation’s Flammable & Combustible liquids licence and prevent excessive stresses as a result of settlement or
Australian Standard 1940 “The storage and handling of expansion resulting from fire exposure.
flammable & combustible liquids.” Failure to comply with • The joint between the pipe and the bund shall be sealed
your licence conditions may result in fines of up to $1500 or to prevent leakage.
the cancellation of your licence.
• The bund shall be designed to withstand the hydrostatic
head when full.
Designing and Constructing Bunds
This section provides some general rules to follow for the Drainage
design and construction of bunds for tank and package
• The bund must allow materials to be drained for either
storages. When designing or constructing a bund the
recycling or disposal by a licensed contractor. Under no
following should be taken into account:
circumstances should collected materials be released to
the environment via stormwater drains.
Size • The bund or compound shall be drained in accordance
with the following:
• Bund size depends on the maximum amount of chemicals
you are likely to store within it. (a) The floor of the bunded compound shall slope away
from any storage to a sump or equivalent.
• Higher bunds are preferable to shallow bunds so as to
minimise the area of fuel burning in the event of a fire. (b)A drain valve provided for controlling the drainage from
the bunded compound shall be located outside the
• Where flammable liquids are stored, the distance from the
top inside of the bund to protected works or on-site
facilities shall be at least one-half of the specified
separation distance given in Table 5.4 of AS 1940 or 15m,
whichever is the lesser.
• The bund wall shall not be higher than 1.5m above interior
grade unless means for safe and rapid entry and exit are
Cyclone Undercover
provided. mesh storage area

• The bund shall not be located closer than one (1) metre Blind
Blind sump
from the tank. Rollover bund sump

• The location of the bund relative to the closest tank shall

be such that the top inside edge of the bund is not inside
the crest locus limit, as specified in Fig. 1. (Basically half
the height of the tank). Example of bunding for liquid drums and containers
(adapted from EPA Victoria and NSW EPA)

For further information on this topic, please contact Council


Flammable and Combustible Liquids con’t

(c) The drain valve shall be of a type in which the Covering

distinction between the open and shut positions It is recommended that bunded areas be roofed to minimise
is obvious. stormwater entering and generating wastewater. However
(d)A bund compound drain valve (where applicable) shall you should assess whether the roof will cause a build-up of
be kept closed and locked except during supervised dangerous or poisonous gases, or restrict the application of
drainage. A notice shall be placed adjacent to the water in an emergency.
valve displaying the following:
Please note: should your bunded area drain to sewer, roofing
requirements are to comply with Council’s Trade Waste Policy.
What is the minimum capacity my bund can hold?
In letters 55mm high, black letters on white background A bund should be able to hold 100% of the capacity of the
(e) If bund drain valves are installed they must be leak largest storage container plus 25% of total storage volume up
proof and able to continue functioning in the event to 10 000L, plus 10% of the storage capacity beyond 10 000L.
of a fire.

• The discharge from any sump shall be through an

Further enquires and approvals
Before work commences on the design and construction of a
interceptor appropriate to the product, readily accessible
bund, further information can be sought from the following
for inspection, located outside the compound, and so
Sections of Council, if necessary:
arranged that discharge of flammable and combustible
liquids to any natural watercourse, public sewer or • Health Services regarding the bunding
drain is prevented. requirements in Australian Standard 1940 and/or your
• The design capacity of the drainage system shall be at licence conditions.
least the rate of supply of emergency water within the • Building Section for building enquiries
compound. • Plumbing and Drainage for enquiries
• Drains should have liquid seals where appropriate to regarding releasing liquid waste to sewer.
prevent the spread of fire through a drainage system.
• A tank or compound used for the retention of spillage,
with or without water, shall be constructed and located
in a similar manner to the tanks and compounds used
for storage.

(a) (b)


For further information on this topic, please contact Council