• EPA Tasmania
  • Assesment
  • Regulation & Assessment
  • Sustainability
  • Policy & Legislation

Prosser River Fuel Contamination

​​​​​​​​Current Situation

​Hydrocarbon (fuel) contamination associated with the former Service Station at 44 Tasman Highway, Orford has been detected below the surface in some places along a section of the Prosser River foreshore known as Radar Beach (see map).​​​​​​​

​​

Potentially harmful contamination may be present in soil, sand and groundwater at depths below 0.5m at the high water mark and possibly less than 0.5m towards the low water mark but not at the surface or in surface water.

Investigation and clean-up of the contamination is being regulated by the EPA by way of a Remediation Notice under Section 74F of the Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994

This Remediation Notice may be viewed through the Regulated Premises layer on the Tasmanian Government LISTMap website. Click on the icon located on the map at 44 Tasman Highway Orford​.

The EPA is expecting to receive a report on the investigation of the fuel pollution before the end of April 2020, and will provide an update at that time.

As a precaution EPA advises users of Radar Beach not to dig in the sand. Other beach uses are not affected by the fuel contamination.

Background

Hydrocarbon (fuel) pollution arising from the former Service Station at 44 Tasman Highway, Orford has been regulated by the Environment Protection Authority since 2013. 

​Various investigations have been completed and remediation works, including removal of significant quantities of polluted groundwater, occurred during 2016-2018. 

In 2017-18 the foreshore area was substantially modified and expanded as part of the works to open the mouth of the Prosser River. 

A recent review by a specialist contamination consultant found that pollution continues to be present in groundwater and may approach the surface at unknown locations near the water’s edge.

In response to the this advice, the EPA required the operator of the former service station at 44 Tasman Highway to reinstate previous signage, as required under a Remediation Notice, to warn foreshore users about the pollution. 

In December 2019 the EPA Director required further investigation designed to better understand the risks relating to the fuel pollution.

In January 2020, as a precaution, the EPA advised users of Radar Beach not to dig in the sand. Other beach uses are not affected by the fuel contamination.