Our requests to Mayor Kaufusi re: Christensen Oil Development Agreement

On December 8, 2020, five of us met with mayor Michelle Kaufusi and expressed our concerns with the Development Agreement that had been presented to her by City Council and City Staff on June 16, 2020.

This is our letter:

– – – – – – –

December 6, 2020

Dear Mayor Kaufusi

We have been meeting with your staff for over 1 year regarding safety issues at Christensen Oil at 595 S 200 E. Christensen stores 300,000 gallons of oil and gasoline just 6 blocks from downtown Provo.

They built their facility up against pre-existing homes in a residential neighborhood, and close to downtown. We are concerned about fire code and zoning code violations, and while your staff have listened to our concerns, we have not seen any substantial improvements in site safety. We still live with oily odors, and fire risk.

An increase in oil storage warehouses and tanks will degrade the quality of our lives, lower the value of our homes, and put us at higher risk for catastrophic fire and noxious fumes.

Your office is now negotiating a Development Agreement with Christensen. We would ask that you include the following criteria as conditions for any development on site:

1) No net increase in oil and gasoline storage.

2) All existing structures be inspected and brought up to fire and building code relating to the current occupancy. Change of occupancy requires that a building be re-inspected and brought to modern code as if it was new construction.

3) The Fire Marshall enforce the regulations of all operations at Christensen Oil according to the 2018 International Fire Code section 102.2 (which dictates that operations cannot be “grandfathered”).

4) Have a professional inspection by an American Petroleum Institute 653 Certified inspector. (API 653 is industry safety standards for bulk petroleum.

5) Be sure the site is OSHA PSM compliant. This governs petroleum “Process Safety Management.”

6) Install odor control systems on all oil and fuel tanks.

7) Require annual inspections, and have inspection results readily available to the public.

8) Christensen must abide by their 1990 covenant with Provo City to not store combustible
materials on land rezoned from R3 to M1.

9) Testing of soil for leaked oil in areas where oil has been stored on gravel in plastic barrels.

10) Phase out older fuel and oil tanks that do not meet current seismic standards.

Thank you,
Carolina Allen
Kanani Horito
Rachel Favero
Ted Buehler

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