Dáil Éireann - Volume 477 - 08 April, 1997

Written Answers - Petrol Retail Outlets.

255. Mr. Ring asked the Minister for Enterprise and Employment when petrol pumps located in town centres will have to close; the timeframe involved; and the compensation, if any, which will be paid to those unable to relocate their businesses. [8912/97]

Minister of State at the Department of Enterprise and Employment (Ms E. Fitzgerald): The operation of all petrol retail outlets is covered by the Dangerous Substances (Retail and Private Petroleum Stores) Regulations, 1979 (S.I. 311 of 1979) as amended by the Dangerous Substances (Retail and Private Petroleum Stores) (Amendment) Regulations, 1988 (S.I. No. 303 of 1988).

The 1979 regulations laid down national licensing requirements for retail and private petroleum stores. These regulations were developed to address the dangers which exist in relation to the operation of such stores. The sole purpose of the regulations was and is the effective control of the licensing of retail petroleum stores in order to prevent the risk of injury to persons or property, in storage, conveying, loading, unloading and dispensing operations carried on in connection with such stores.

Due to the fact that a considerable number of petrol retailing stations did not meet the necessary safety standards in respect of space, storage of petroleum and access for vehicles, the 1988 regulations provided an exemption until 31 December 1999 from a number of 1979 regulations. The position regarding the implementation of the regulations is under review at present.

My Department does not operate any grant or subsidy scheme in respect of the adaptation or relocation of premises in compliance with the regulations.