LPG system installer John Wigfull & Co has warned retailers not to fit and forget their LPG installations. Speaking at the APEA conference in Coventry last month, director Richard Wigfull said retailers must ensure they have a routine maintenance schedule in place because final responsibility rests with the site operator.

"It’s the operator on site that carries the can if something goes wrong so don’t fit an LPG installation and forget about it," he said. "The biggest priority is to make sure the customer is safe when they come to operate an installation."

Wigfull said the release of LPG with or without an ignition can only result from failure of the LPG system due to either poor installation, incorrect maintenance, incorrect operation or external factors such as a fire. Retailers were advised to walk around their site on a regular basis to make sure there is no physical damage or rubbish thrown over the compound; check hose pullaways annually; inspect hoses, which have a maximum life of five years; check nozzle condition as LPG nozzles usually need a full overhaul at least every two years. Dispenser accuracy should be checked annually too.

In another presentation at the conference, Bob Renkes, executive vice president of the US organisation Petroleum Equipment Institute (PEI), warned the UK petroleum industry to plan well ahead for the introduction of E15. Sharing the US’ experience of challenges in the transition to E15, Renkes said that when ageing equipment was exposed to high ethanol fuel blends beyond E10, sites were finding degradation of gaskets, seals and hoses, which was causing leaks.

Meanwhile, at the APEA awards dinner XMO Strata won the Health & Safety Award for sharing its ’no blame’ culture; while Tanks & Pipeworks Ltd scooped the Environment Award for its try-line tank lining system. Global-MSI won the Business Initiative Award for its temporary canopy handrail; and Eurotank won both the Innovation and Quality awards for its new tank entry and lining equipment and 2011 quality initiatives.