The owner of Byway Trailer Park says he can't afford another heating oil spill. (CBC)

The owner of a trailer park in Cornwall, P.E.I. is telling residents they have to switch away from oil heating, or he will shut down the park.

Byway Trailer Park owner Clifford McQuaid is worried about paying for the cost of another oil spill on the property.

"The trailer owners can't get proper insurance on the trailers, and if there's a spill or leakage it falls back on the owner of the trailer park which in this case was me," McQuaid told CBC News Thursday.

McQuaid said he's still paying for an oil spill that happened at one of the trailers in his park last year. Heating oil spills can cost tens of thousands of dollars to clean up, and McQuaid said he can't risk facing those costs again.

He has delivered an ultimatum to his 24 tenants, convert to electric heat or move out. McQuaid said he can't afford to run the park with fewer than 24 tenants, so they all need to agree to convert to keep it open.

Tenant Kristen Hollet said it's a difficult situation for everyone.

"He doesn't want to be left holding the bag for a large sum of money if there happens to be another oil spill in the park," said Hollett.

"At the same time I don't think he takes into consideration the fact that there's a lot of older people in the park. and that they don't have maybe means of changing."

McQuaid wants a decision in two weeks, and everyone converted in 30 days if that's the decision. If not, they'll have three to six months to find a new place to live.