Petroleum Surface Spill-Cleanup by Excavation Checklist
This information is provided by the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy to assist the public and regulated community.
Form #: 21-065 Other Revised: 11/17/21

This checklist is intended to assist environmental cleanup contractors and members of the regulated community who perform cleanup of petroleum surface spills by means of excavation and disposal of petroleum-contaminated soils. This list is not to be considered all-inclusive. Call for a utility locate and submit application(s) for required permit(s) ASAP so as not to delay cleanup. If cleanup can be completed quickly, NDEE’s general guidance is to remove all petroleum-contaminated soils based upon visual and olfactory evidence. In cases where cleanup is delayed, confirmation soil samples from the excavation will be necessary.

To do before mobilizing to job site

o Complete utility locate: or call (800) 331-5666
o Obtain permission from landowner to perform cleanup (NDOT Right to Occupy permit for state hwy/I-80)o Develop soil management plan
o Amount of soil to be excavated: goal is to remove ALL petroleum-contaminated soils
o Traffic control/lane closure when needed to safely complete cleanup
o Licensed landfill that will accept soils (landfill may require TCLP or other tests prior to acceptance)
§ Diesel-contaminated soils are special waste: non-hazardous waste
§ Gasoline-contaminated soils: test (including benzene) to determine if it is hazardous waste
§ Landfill scale tickets: include copies in Final Report to NDEE
o Alternative to landfill disposal is landfarming: submit form to NDEE for land application approval
o Clean fill soil acceptable to landowner delivered to site to refill excavation
o Means to demonstrate spill is not threat to surface water, threat to ground water, or damaging to property if infrastructure prevents complete cleanup through excavation
§ Soil sample screening/lab analysis to demonstrate attenuation with depth
§ Risk-based Corrective Action Tier 1 investigation
o Skid-steer loader/excavator appropriate for job: fueled and serviced prior to mobilization
o Sufficient dump truck/trailers or roll-off containers to complete job in timely manner
o Be aware of landfill closing time and time of travel to landfill
To take to the job site

o Camera to document cleanup: before, during, and after photographs
o GPS to obtain latitude/longitude location of spill (some smart phones have this feature)
o Tape measure and graph paper to draw site sketch
o Grass seed and erosion control materials to restore the excavation area

Not required in all situations

o Field screening of soil samples (strongly encouraged for all cleanups)
o Charged and calibrated photo-ionization detector
o Wide-mouth jars and aluminum foil to cover mouth of jars
o Means to warm samples for 30 minutes in cold weather: usually dash of truck
o Laboratory analysis of soil samples (necessary when cleanup has been delayed)
o Appropriate glassware obtained from laboratory
§ Diesel/motor oil spill-analysis method OA-2
§ Gasoline spill-analysis method OA-1 or 8260
o Cooler to store/ship samples to laboratory