Spills Reporting

Trish Kindt
Scientist Manager I
Phone (605) 773-3296


To Report A Spill

Call DANR at 605-773-3296 (weekdays 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. central time). Call State Radio Communications at 605-773-3231 (after hours, on weekends or holiday, or if there is no response on the -3296 line).

Why are spill reporting requirements important?

When gasoline, pesticides, solvents, or other substances are spilled or released, there is a potential that surface water, groundwater or human health may be threatened. The South Dakota Regulated Substance Program was established to identify what substances and quantities of substances need to be reported, when they should be reported, and to ensure that a spill or release is contained or remediated as quickly as possible.

What statutes and regulations apply to me if I have a release or spill?

The statutes can be found in South Dakota Codified Law (SDCL) Chapter 34A-12 and the regulations are in the Administrative Rules of South Dakota (ARSD) Chapter 74:34.

Immediately report a spill if:

  1. The discharge threatens or is in a position to threaten the waters of the state (surface water or ground water);
  2. The discharge causes an immediate danger to human health or safety;
  3. The discharge exceeds 25 gallons; if you release a gaseous substance and need help converting to gallons, (click here);
  4. The discharge causes a sheen on surface water;
  5. The discharge of any substance that exceeds the ground water quality standards of ARSD chapter 74:54:01;
  6. The discharge of any substance that exceeds the surface water quality standards of ARSD chapter 74:51:01;
  7. The discharge of any substance that harms or threatens to harm wildlife or aquatic life;
  8. The discharge of crude oil in field activities under SDCL chapter 45-9 is greater than 1 barrel (42 gallons);
  9. The discharge is required to be reported according to SARA Title III List of Lists, Consolidated List of Chemicals Subject to Reporting Under the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act, US Environmental Protection Agency;
  10. The discharge exceeds 5 gallons liquid pesticide or 50 pounds dry pesticide, spilled during transportation;
  11. The discharge exceeds 25 pounds of active ingredient pesticide, outside secondary containment;
  12. The discharge is less than 25 gallons, but has not been cleaned up within 24 hours.

To report a release or spill, call DANR at 605-773-3296 during regular office hours (8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central time). To report the release after hours, on weekends or holidays, call State Radio Communications at 605-773-3231. Reporting the release to DANR does not meet any obligation for reporting to other state, local, or federal agencies. Therefore, the responsible person must also contact local authorities to determine the local reporting requirements for releases. DANR recommends that spills also be reported to the National Response Center at (800) 424-8802.

Suspected Discharges must be reported to DANR within 24 Hours. (ARSD 74:34:01:05)

Who is responsible for cleanup of the spill?

If the identity of the person who caused the discharge can be determined, that person shall be designated as the responsible person. If the identity of the person who caused the discharge cannot be determined, the owner of the property or operator of the tank at the time of the discharge shall be designated as the responsible person. (SDCL 34A-12-16)

If I am the responsible person, what are my responsibilities?

If a release poses an immediate threat to human health or the environment, or if such a threat arises, immediate action must be taken by the responsible person. These actions may include:

  1. Stopping the release at the source (if it can be done safely);
  2. Evacuating the area;
  3. Shutting off all ignition sources;
  4. Containing the released material with the use of earthen berms or absorbents;
  5. Notifying all appropriate authorities.

After the threat has been alleviated, the responsible person must proceed with assessment and remediation of the site. A listing of Environmental Consultants is maintained by DANR for this purpose.

If you have any questions concerning the reporting of releases or spills, please contact Jaclyn McGuire at (605) 773-3296 in Pierre or Email DANR.


Risk to Public and Private Wells

The South Dakota Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources has developed a comprehensive guidance document on how to evaluate risk to public and private wells from a petroleum release site. The guidance document also clarifies the Tier 2 risk based assessment and Tier 3 requirements at the aquifer sites including the wellhead protection areas.

The Tier 3 modeling can be done at release sites where Tier 2 risk based assessment has been done and identified the presence of public or private wells. For details check out the guidance document.


The South Dakota Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources handbook for investigation and corrective action requirements for discharges from storage tanks, piping systems, and other releases. The Petroleum Assessment and Cleanup Handbook should be used when performing site assessments, remediation activities, etc. at petroleum release sites.