For about five years, I've been in an unfriendly situation with my nearest neighbor (over past events with the kids getting into trouble and barking loose dogs).
Then, the past two months, no less than 5 inspectors came to my property to check for hazardous conditions due to 'anonymous' complaints.
The first was the fire marshall who was told I had 'large gasoline tanks' on the property. Turns out, fuel containers of fewer than 60 gallons each are exempt from fire marshall permit needs (a permit application alone, he told me, is over $750).
That didn't strike me as too weird until the zoning guys dropped by. They said someone complained about an improper 'accessory structure' used to house gasoline. Turns out any accessory structure that is six feet from the property line meets zoning requirements, so he left me alone.
It started to get weirder when the building inspector showed up for the same reason (don't these guys talk to each other?). He too left empty handed. Apparently an accessory structure only needs a permit if it's greater than 120 square feet and if its highest point is greater than 14 feet tall.
I knew someone had it in for me when, a month later, my wife called me at work to say there was a guy snooping around the property without even knocking on the door! She called the police and then called me!
Turns out, it was a hazmat inspector who had received a complaint about a 'primary container' leaking with no 'secondary containment' in place. He left before I arrived but told my wife that there was nothing he could or would do unless it was actually leaking as there are no storage regulations for private property other than you can't actually leak gasoline into the ground.
He did suggest a 'secondary containment' of an oblong horse trough though.
I rushed home early from work to find both the police and yet another inspector talking to my wife in the back yard. This inspector was from the air quality management district. He said that organic fuel gas tanks less than 260 gallons were exempt from vapor recovery & pressure venting requirements, so he left before the cop finished asking questions.
The cop seemed amused by the whole story - but he asked a LOT of questions about the gas cans lying around.
Turns out that you can't transport anything heavier (yes, heavier) than 500 pounds of "fuel" in a vehicle (not counting the vehicle's gasoline tank itself) which he said was 62 gallons of gasoline (#11160 title 13 California Code of Regulations & 32000.5a California Vehicle Code). He also mentioned that 172.504c Title 49 of the code of Federal Regulations requires a placard if you carry more than 1,000 pounds of gasoline.
Since I'm only carrying about 50 gallons, I'm exempt from that too!
All in all, an interesting story. Now, I do have a sense of humor so I have to figure out how I can get my neighbor back.
Have you ever engaged in these type of neighborly wars? Any good ideas?