SOURCE: British Columbia Safety Authority

British Columbia Safety Authority

April 27, 2016 19:05 ET

BC Safety Authority: Propane Tank Owners Reminded to Obtain an Operating Permit

NEW WESTMINSTER, BC--(Marketwired - April 27, 2016) - BC Safety Authority (BCSA) is reminding propane tank owners in British Columbia of their responsibility to obtain an operating permit as required by the Safety Standards Act.

Since 2004, propane tanks that are in operation and pressurized above 15 pounds per square inch gauge (psig) require a BCSA operating permit. Common sizes of propane storage tanks currently available vary from 120 US water gallons (USWG) up to 1000 USWG. These tanks store propane that is typically used in home heating systems and for various commercial and industrial sites.

"We're working to help owners become more aware of their operating permit obligations and how to comply with safety regulations," stated Tony Scholl, BCSA's Safety Manager for Boilers, Pressure Vessels and Refrigeration.

BCSA issued a directive on June 22, 2015 to clarify and communicate the regulatory requirements regarding propane tank operating permits.

"An operating permit is required for all operational propane tanks in order for BCSA to provide safety oversight," added Scholl.

Having accurate propane tank data enables BCSA to assess hazards and effectively communicate important safety information to owners so that they can protect themselves, their equipment and those around them. When pressure vessels are used to store large quantities of combustible fuel, such as propane, there is an inherent safety risk involved to owners and the surrounding public and property.

Currently, over 80% of propane suppliers have applied for tank operating permits to comply with safety regulations and BCSA is receiving more tank information daily.

All owners of propane tanks are responsible to provide tank data to BCSA and to obtain a permit for each tank that is in operation. This permit requirement is applicable regardless of the type of installation (e.g., industrial, commercial, residential, etc.). However, the operating permit fee will be automatically waived for tanks equal to or less than 500 USWG, regardless of purpose or use. For tanks over 500 USWG that are used for residential purposes only, owners can apply for a fee waiver.

Owners should note that portable propane cylinders, such as those used with barbecues, small heating equipment, and recreation vehicles, are subject to Transport Canada regulations and do not require a BCSA operating permit.

More information and educational videos about propane pressure vessels are available at:

Questions can be directed to BCSA by email at:, or by calling 778-396-2033.

About BC Safety Authority

BC Safety Authority is an independent, self-funded organization mandated to oversee the safe installation and operation of technical systems and equipment, including elevating devices. In addition to issuing permits, licences and certificates, it works with industry to reduce safety risks through assessment, education and outreach, enforcement, and research.

To receive an email alert when BC Safety Authority news is released, sign up at:

BCSA also publishes various equipment safety newsletters, available here:

An example of an unsafe propane tank -- resting on the ground while leaning into a creek, supported by pieces of wood. Tank support must be on a firm, level and non-combustible base with at least a 6" clearance between the tank bottom and grade (ground). Gas lines cannot be installed on the grade surface such as pictured here.

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