Hampshire Trading Standards

Training for authorising attendants employed at filling stations

This advice is designed to provide basic guidance to traders. It is not a complete or authoritative statement of the law.

How to deal with a large spillage

Spillages of over 50 litres outside in open air or over 5 litres inside

To ensure the following functions are carried out immediately and to delegate if necessary;

  • Telephone 999 Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.
  • Isolate site so that no vehicles may be started which might cause an ignitable source.
  • Evacuate staff members and the general public.
  • Wait at a safe distance until Fire and Rescue Service arrive.

How to deal with a small spillage

Spillages under 50 litres outside in open air or under 5 litres inside

  • Press internal emergency switch to isolate fuel dispensers.
  • Telephone 999 Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service if spillage warrants it.
  • Isolate a safe zone around the spillage, free from vehicles which may cause an ignitable source.
  • Use sand/absorbent material to contain spillage.
  • Ensure contaminated sand/absorbent material is collected and deposited into a suitable designated container (plastic/metal bin), and disposed of in due course with regard to the appropriate waste regulations.
  • Ascertain from records how much product was lost.
  • Contact Petroleum Officer and inform him/her of incident.
  • If spillage has been satisfactorily dealt with, re-open site.
  • If a dispenser or associated apparatus has been damaged, keep the dispenser in question isolated via individual circuit breakers/fuses.

Control Point Operation

  • Look and check before authorising the fuel dispensers:
  • Age of person over 16 years
  • No ignitable sources present (ie car engines switched off, non-use of mobile phones, cigarettes etc)

    Type of container which is being filled with petroleum-spirit:
  • must be robust, be marked with "Highly Flammable - Petroleum Spirit" warning notices, no vents in top of container)
  • and in the case of a plastic container be of 5 litres maximum capacity, approved design and conforming to the standard
    SI 1982/630
  • Aware of location of internal/external emergency switch.
  • Correct use of customer communication system.
  • Clear knowledge of numbering of fuel dispensers.

Forecourt Safety

  • Able to use a fire extinguisher.
  • Knowledge of location of extinguishers and sand/absorbent material.
  • If water extinguishers present inside kiosk area, not to use them on forecourt. Only to use dry powder, foam or carbon dioxide.
  • Report any faulty dispensing equipment immediately, individually isolate until checked.
  • To replace sand/absorbent material if used, aware of further supplies.
  • Ensure suitable lighting on site.

Site Housekeeping

  • Aware of health and safety obligations and duties including the site specific risk assessment.
  • Ensure Contractors/Maintenance company employees/visitors sign in and out in general maintenance repair register.
  • Adhere to personal safety requirements.


People driving off without paying

Some sites have had success in coning off the worst-affected pumps during the times when drive-offs most commonly occur.

Diligent staff with an awareness of who is on the forecourt and what they are doing at all times is essential in ensuring the safe operation of any site.

You may also want to consider upgrading your CCTV system and keeping logged evidence to assist the police in investigating any incidents.


This list is not exhaustive, it only offers suggested guidance on staff training to ensure a safe working environment for employers, employees and the general public.

Special circumstances at individual sites or unusual emergency situations have not been taken into consideration and these may affect the suggested training needs.

Your petroleum licence conditions clearly stipulate the need for staff training and it would be advisable for each relevant staff member to acknowledge their duties and responsibilities by signing some form of permanent record to that effect.