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Agricultural Chemical Spill Response. Minnesota Department of Agriculture. What is an AgChem Spill?. Definition : A release to the environment of a pesticide or fertilizer. Pesticides are herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, etc. Fertilizers are anhydrous ammonia, urea, 10-34-0, UAN, etc. .

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Agricultural Chemical Spill Response


Department of Agriculture

what is an agchem spill
What is an AgChem Spill?
  • Definition: A release to the environment of a pesticide or fertilizer.

Pesticides are herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, etc. Fertilizers are anhydrous ammonia, urea, 10-34-0, UAN, etc.

ag chem incidents in mn
Ag Chem Incidents in MN
  • From 100 to 150 per year
  • Most occur in the spring and fall
  • Contamination requires a lot of effort to remediate
  • Anhydrous ammonia accounts for 25% of spills
five steps of a spill response
Five Steps of a Spill Response
  • Secure
  • Telephone
  • Abate
  • Recover
  • Remediate
  • Acronym for Secure, Telephone, Abate, Recover, and Remediate.

STARR serves to guide you through a spill. Its order will change depending on the type of spill.

example spray tank rupture
Example: Spray Tank Rupture
  • Crack occurred in fiberglass spray tank.
  • Atrazine/Extrazine tankmix released immediately.
  • Near home well.
  • Soil slopes away from well.
secure site

Example: Spray Tank Rupture

Secure Site
  • Keep children away.
  • Secure site from pets and livestock.
  • Wear correct personal protective clothing.


abatement contain and control

Example: Spray Tank Rupture

Abatement (Contain and Control)
  • Sudden spills are difficult to stop.
  • You are left with trying to control the spread of the tankmix.



Example: Spray Tank Rupture

  • Local authorities
    • 911 if danger to life or property
  • State authorities
    • Minnesota Duty Officer at 1 (800) 422-0798
  • National Response Center if the amount spilled exceeds its reportable quantity.
    • 1-800-424-8802


abatement contain

Example: Spray Tank Rupture

Abatement (Contain)
  • Pump up liquid.
  • Dike area if spill occurred during storm or if excavation is delayed.
  • Follow any applicable guidance.


recover spilled product

Example: Spray Tank Rupture

Recover Spilled Product
  • If digging required in ditch (see arrow) call Gopher State One-Call (Minnesota) prior to any excavation to determine presence of buried utilities.

(800) 252-1166


recovery excavation

Example: Spray Tank Rupture

Recovery (Excavation)
  • Backhoe, skidsteer, tractor mounted bucket can all be used to dig.
  • Plan on where to store it.
  • Is land available now for spreading?
  • Will I have to wait till fall?


recovery how deep

Example: Spray Tank Rupture

Recovery (How deep?)

Government officials may assist you in soil sampling to determine adequacy of cleanup, if sampling is necessary.


stock piling soil

Example: Spray Tank Rupture

Stock Piling Soil
  • Place on impermeable surface.
  • Cover with plastic to prevent runoff.


remediate land spreading

Example: Spray Tank Rupture

Remediate (Land Spreading)
  • Calculate yards in pile.
    • 60 yards.
  • Amount in spray tank?
    • 10 acre tankmix.
  • Yards per acre.
    • 60/10=6 yards per acre.
  • Apply at ½ rate.
    • 3 yards over 20 acres.


remediation land spreading

Example: Spray Tank Rupture

Remediation (Land Spreading)
  • ½ rate is intended to prevent hotspots.
  • Manure spreaders and fert or lime spreaders work well.
  • Can be commercially done.
  • MDA preapproval needed.


cleanup costs reimbursement
Cleanup Costs Reimbursement

ACRRAAgricultural Chemical Response

and Reimbursement Account

Surcharge funded account on industry to reimburse costs associated with ag chem incident cleanups.

cleanup fund acrra
Cleanup Fund (ACRRA)
  • Fund to reimburse costs in cleaning up agchem spills.
  • Will not cover costs of lost product.
  • First $1,000 is out of pocket.
    • 80% of eligible costs up to $350,000. (Maximum reimbursement of $279,200).

Most emergency cleanups will cost less than $1,000.

create an incident contingency plan
Create an Incident Contingency Plan

A plan to protect employees, property, business, environment, and emergency responders from any release of hazardous materials at your site.

in summary
In Summary
  • Secure, Telephone, Abate, Recover, Remediate
  • Work with local and state officials
  • ACRRA cost recovery
  • Prevent future spills