Double Hull Requirement for Tank Vessels
-Tank vessels must meet or exceed double hull specifications by
the year 2015. Vessels are being refit to comply, changed to transport
non-petroleum products such as grain, or scrapped.
Access to national records –
the Coast Guard to review national driver registration and criminal
records prior to issuing or renewing a merchant mariner’s license or
Civil and Criminal Penalty Provisions –
Coast Guard to take appropriate punitive legal action against
Area Committees and Contingency Plans –
Requires formation of response plans tailored specifically to areas that
could be effected by oil spills and hazardous substance releases.
Vessel and Facility Response Plans - Operators of oil
facilities and transport vessels are required to establish detailed
response plans in conjunction with federal and local response
Liability and Compensation -
National Pollution Funds Center (NPFC) –
Responsible for managing the billion dollar oil spill liability
trust fund, which is used to fund spill responses, compensate claimants,
fund environmental assessments and recover costs from responsible parties.
Financial Responsibility for Pollution –
Vessel owners or operators must establish and maintain evidence of
Response Management System
- Establishes guidelines for creating a unified
command system that can coordinate multiple federal, state and local
responders. The management system also requires on-scene coordinators (OSCs)
to direct response efforts and coordinate all action at the scene of a
response. There are 47 specially trained OSC’s residing in strategic
ports around the country.
National Strike Force - A team of highly trained,
experienced personnel and specialized equipment which are strategically
placed along each coast for the specific purpose of responding to major
spills or releases. The national strike teams have responded to almost
600 incidents worldwide since 1991.
Since the implementation of OPA 90 -
The average number of oil spills over 10,000
gallons has dropped by approximately 50 percent from pre-1991 levels.
The gallons spilled per million gallons of oil shipped has been
reduced from an annual average of 10 gallons spilled per million shipped
for the years 1987 to 1990 to 5 gallons spilled per million shipped during
the years 1991 to 1997 – a 50 percent decrease.
There have been no spills over one million gallons in the United
States since 1990.
The total volume of tank-ship oil spills in the U.S. peaked in
1989 and has remained below 200,000 gallons since 1991.