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CONTACT INFO Columbus Division of Fire
3639 Parsons Ave
Columbus, Ohio 43207
Office: 614.221.3132
Fire Prevention Bureau : 614.645.7641

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Ignitable Liquid Storage Tanks

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The Columbus Fire Department is delegated by the State Fire Marshal to issue UST permits and perform inspections in the City of Columbus.  If you perform permit-required activities in the City of Columbus, then you must submit the permit application and payment to the Columbus Fire Prevention Bureau. The State of Ohio BUSTR permit fee is not required.

The Columbus Fire Code requires a BUSTR certified installer for permit-required activities of an AST or UST.

Aboveground Storage Tanks (AST)

A permit must be obtained from the Columbus Fire Prevention Bureau prior to the Installation, alteration, removal, abandonment, or out of service of any ignitable liquid AST over sixty (60) gallons. All permit-required activities must be supervised by a (BUSTR) certified installer.

AST Permit Application click here

Underground Storage Tanks (UST)

A permit must be obtained from the Columbus Fire Prevention Bureau prior to the installation, removal, modification, major repair, abandonment, change in service, change of product or out of service of any ignitable liquid UST over one hundred and ten(110) gallons and/or tank system. All permit-required activities must be supervised by a (BUSTR) certified installer. 

UST Permit Application click here

Application Guidelines 

The permit application shall include a general description of all proposed activities. Provide drawings and specifications no larger than 11”x 17” that clearly show compliance with distances and applicable requirements of the Ohio Fire Code, Columbus Fire Code, National Fire Protection Agency, American Petroleum Institute, Petroleum Equipment Institute or other referenced standards as incorporated therein.

Aboveground Tank Removal and Abandonment

  • Include a letter explaining reason for abandonment, include documentation (photos, satellite images etc.).
  • Show the location of the tank, any buildings and all property lines.
  • Indicate tank capacity in gallons, product that was stored and date last used.

Aboveground Tank Installation and Alteration

  • Drawn to scale or dimension
  • The location of all property lines and public ways, including the opposite side of public ways.
  • Show buildings/structures on the site and indicate the nature of their use.
  • Show location, use, capacity and piping arrangement of all existing underground and aboveground tanks.
  • Indicate tank capacity in gallons and indicate product that will be stored in each tank. 

Manufacturers cut sheets and drawings on tanks and all equipment:

  • Indicating approval for its intended use (listing and labeling)
    • Tank, dimensions, capacity and spacing between adjacent tanks
    • Emergency tank vent(s) type, size and atmospheric tank vent size, height, location and vent cap type
    • Tank and dispenser vehicle impact protection details, islands and bollards
    • Piping details
    • Pump, dispenser and other associated electrical equipment type and location
    • Piping details
    • Signage and placard (NFPA 704) type and location
    • Tank security details (fencing etc.)
    • Separation distances from property lines, buildings, fencing, bollards etc.
    • Tank fill type, location, and height from finished grade
    • Method of spill and tank overfill protection

    In addition proposed dispensing installation plans shall provide the following information:

    • Include a statement indicating the intent of the fueling operation and the type of vehicles intended to be fueled.
    • Fire extinguisher size, type and locations
    • The location of all fuel dispensers, emergency stop buttons and emergency telephone (if applicable).

    Permit Applications can be submitted electronically to [email protected] 

    Or mailed to:

    Fire Prevention Bureau

    Attention of AST/UST

    3639 Parsons Ave. 

    Columbus, Ohio 43207

    Permit Information

    • All permit-required activities for ignitable liquid storage tanks, must be supervised by a Bureau of Underground Storage Tank Regulations (BUSTR) installer. 
    • The permit holder is responsible for the completion of the permit-required activities through the final inspection. 
    • Any permit issued shall become invalid if the activity is not commenced within six (6) months after issuance or the activity is suspended for a period of six (6) months.

    Schedule Inspection

    Prior to scheduling, the BUSTR installer name and BUSTR number must be provided.

    For permit-required activities and inspections, the BUSTR installer shall be on site with a current BUSTR license and photo Identification.  

    Any inspection outside of regular inspection hours, Monday-Friday 8:00am-2:00pm, requires prior approval and the current after hours inspection rate may apply. An afterhours inspection can be requested at the time of scheduling if the activity is likely to continue after 2:00pm.

    To schedule an inspection, contact this office at least one week in advance of the anticipated inspection date. [email protected] or 614-645-7641 ext.75660

    • Submit completed application(s) and permit fees electronically or by mail.
    • CFD will review the application/plans and confirm payment.
    • After approval, a permit will be issued electronically or by mail.
    • Permit-required activities may begin and must be supervised by a Bureau of Underground Storage Tank Regulations (BUSTR) certified installer.
    • Contact this office at least one week in advance to schedule inspection date and provide BUSTR installer information.
    • Preliminary inspection by CFD, any inspection prior to the Final Inspection.
    • Final inspection by CFD, all activities are to be complete and in code compliance.
    • Do not put fuel in tanks until after passing the final inspection.
    • After passing the Final Inspection, the system can be used.

    Frequently Asked Questions:

    Do I need a permit to install any size storage tank? 
    No, a permit is only required if the AST is over 60 gallons or the UST is over 110 gallons.

    Is there a limit on the size/capacity of aboveground tanks?
    For dispensing ASTs, the aggregate total gallons of fuel stored at one facility to 12,000 gallons regardless of the number of containers. For bulk tanks, the number of tanks is not limited, but what usually limits the number of tanks on a property are the tank-to-tank and tank-to-property line separation distance requirements, which increase as the volume of the storage tank increases.

    Do I need a permit if I am replacing an existing AST with another AST or relocating an existing AST on the same property?
    Yes. Whenever a different tank is being introduced to a site, regardless of whether an AST already existed at the site, a permit is required. When a tank is being relocated on the same property, a permit is necessary to ensure that the relocation remains in compliance with all applicable codes.

    Is a permit needed from CFD for the replacement of dispensers?
    If the replacement does not involve any piping retrofitting at or below the shear valve, a permit is not needed. If piping is being altered at or below the shear valve, a permit is required.

    I am certified in another state. Can I use that certification?
    No, there is no reciprocity from any other state. You must be a State of Ohio Certified Underground Storage Tank Installer.

    Does my generator with a fuel tank have to be installed by a BUSTR Installer? 
    Yes, all permit-required activities must be supervised by a BUSTR Installer.

    Have questions regarding HIGH HAZARD occupancies?

    Go to our High Hazards webpage for help.


    • UST (Underground Storage Tank)
    • AST (Aboveground Storage Tank)
    • BUSTR (Bureau of Underground Storage Tank Regulations)
    • CFD (Columbus Fire Department)

    For inquiries related to Ignitable Liquid Storage Tanks

    Phone: 614-645-7641 ext.75660

    Email: [email protected]