Manure Spill Response & Recovery

Steps to take in response to a manure spill

  1. Eliminate the source
  2. Contain the spill
  3. Call 911 and notify appropriate  agencies
  4. Clean-up

Emergency Action Plans

The first line of defense against manure spills is to have an Emergency Action Plan. The plan should be discussed ahead of time with all farm employees so that every employee knows his/her role and the steps to take in the event of a manure spill. Contractors, equipment suppliers and local authorities should also be informed of the plan.

Post the plan where all employees can see it, practice, review and revise at least once a year.

Ag Sentinel Agriculture Emergency Situation Reporting (PDF): Quickly, easily, and accurately assess damage to all agricultural inventory, and estimate economic loss. The reporting form provides a standardized method for individuals who are interested in determining the extent of damages to agricultural commodities and structures. CCE personnel should follow internal Standard Operating Procedures for using the Ag Sentinel tool to report agricultural losses. Ask a Disaster All-Hazards Response Team member or your Association Executive Director for more information.

Spill Prevention and Applicable Standards

Manure storages must be properly designed, constructed and maintained according to established standards to ensure the stability and safety of the facility. All manure storages need to be inspected periodically for cracks, leaks and other signs of failure. This is especially true for earthen storages which were not professionally designed.

The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service has standards for the construction, operation and maintenance of manure storages in this Field Office Technical Guide. (Click on NYS then a county; Select Section IV of the eFOTG, then one of the standards below).

Applicable conservation practice standards in New York include

  • NY312 Waste Management System
  • NY313 Waste Storage Facility
  • NY359 Waste Treatment Lagoon
  • NY590 Nutrient Management
  • NY 633 Waste Utilization
  • NY 707 Barnyard Water Management Systems
  • NY 749 Manure Pile Area
  • NY634 Manure Transfer
  • NY 748 Recordkeeping
  • NHCP 360 Closure of Waste Impoundments

Applicable conservation practice guidelines in New York include

  • Code 313 Waste Storage Structure – Earthen Pond

Educational and Technical Resources