Nurse tanks are used to transport anhydrous ammonia fertilizer as a liquid under pressure from the dealer to the customer. Transportation accidents rarely occur when towed down the road, moved from one field to another, or during field applications. The nurse tank itself is made out of thick steel and the valves are protected so if a tank does overturn a release of ammonia seldom occurs.
Below briefly lists procedures to follow when responding to an anhydrous ammonia tank tip over. Please keep in mind that each incident is unique and that the following procedures should only be used as a rough guide.
The Minnesota Department of Agriculture considers a nurse tank involved in an accident as an incident that needs immediate reporting to the Minnesota Duty Officer. These incidents need reporting whether or not an actual release of ammonia occurred. The fact that there is the threat of a release requires immediate reporting of the incident by telephoning 800-422-0798.
These photographs were taken in Cottonwood, Minnesota during anhydrous ammonia first responders training courtesy of the Cottonwood Fire Department, Cottonwood Coop, and Regulatory Management and Consulting, Inc., Sioux City, Iowa.