ASTM F1779 - 08(2014)

    Standard Practice for Reporting Visual Observations of Oil on Water

    Active Standard ASTM F1779 | Developed by Subcommittee: F20.16

    Book of Standards Volume: 11.05


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    Significance and Use

    3.1 This practice can be used by surveillance and tracking staff to report visual observations. The data produced from such observations will provide the basis for preparing maps of the oil-slick location.

    3.2 This practice provides a procedure for reporting the visual observation of oil on water in a systematic manner and in a common format.

    3.3 This practice deals with the possibility that materials other than oil might be confused with oil when using visual observation methods.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This practice covers methods of reporting and recording visual observations of oil on water and related response activities.

    1.2 This practice applies only to visual observations of oil on water from an airplane or helicopter. While a similar set of codes could be used for classifying oil on beaches, this subject is not discussed in this practice. It does not cover the use of remote-sensing equipment from aircraft, which is discussed in a separate standard. This does not include observations of dispersed oil.

    1.3 This practice is applicable for all types of oil under a variety of environmental and geographical situations.

    1.4 Visual observations of oil on water from the air involve a number of safety issues associated with the operation of airplanes or helicopters at low altitudes. These are not dealt with in this practice, but the observer should be aware of the hazards of such operations.

    1.5 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. No other units of measurement are included in this standard.

    1.6 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    F2534 Guide for Visually Estimating Oil Spill Thickness on Water


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 13.060.50 (Examination of water for chemical substances)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code 77131502(Oil spillage control services)


    DOI: 10.1520/F1779

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