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Travel Tips: Propane Safety
Summer is almost upon us, and with warmer temperatures on
our doorsteps, it's a great time to run safety and equipment checks on the RV.
This issue, we're focusing on propane safety.
Here are some lifesaving tips on propane safety for your RV,
adapted from the BC Safety Authority (BCSA - safetyauthority.ca):
Purchase and Maintain
Purchase RVs with gas appliances that have been
inspected and certified by the BCSA
Buy propane equipment that is certified for use
Follow RV manufacturer's instructions for
operation and maintenance.
Have equipment maintained regularly. Use the
Canadian Propane Association "Propane Services Directory" at http://www.propaneservices.ca/
to find the right business to help you.
If your propane cylinder is dented or has visible
rust, be sure to have it inspected by a professional.
Ensure your cylinders are inspected and
recertified every 10 years.
Check propane tanks for leaks.
Propane appliances may produce Carbon Monoxide
(CO) if they are not working properly. CO is a poisonous, colourless, odourless
Use appliances for their intended use only.
Never use stove burners or ovens for space heating.
Never use portable propane camping equipment
inside your RV (e.g. camping stoves, barbeques, lanterns, catalytic or radiant
Open a vent or window and turn on the range hood
fan when using a propane stove or oven.
Use a Canadian certified CO alarm, in addition
to your smoke and propane alarms.
Check connections for leaks after exchanging
propane cylinders. Use a mixture of 50% liquid soap and 50% water applied with
a paint brush or a portable gas leak detector. Bubbles equal leaks!
Medical Attention if Anyone Shows the Following Symptoms of CO Poisoning:
lack of physical coordination
Know the Smell of
Propane smells like rotten eggs. If you think
you smell propane in your RV get everyone out immediately.
Don't smoke, light matches, operate electrical
switches, use either cell phones or telephones, or create any other source of
Turn your gas off at the main cylinder, if safe
to do so and you know how.
Call the area fire department emergency number
or 911 from the nearest phone outside of the RV.
Transport cylinders upright and secured.
Transport fewer than 5 cylinders at a time.
Keep tanks and other liquid fuel out of the
passenger seat or living area of your RV.
Purchase a safety product that will help you
secure your propane cylinder and keep it upright during transportation.
Ensure the cylinder has proper ventilation - roll
down the rear passenger side window if it is in the back seat or if being
transported in the trunk of a vehicle, secure the trunk so that it's partially
Turn off the engine and all appliances and pilot
lights before refuelling your vehicle.
When it comes time to dispose of your tanks, ensure they are
empty and take them to your landfill or transfer station. Many landfills and
transfer stations no longer accept non-refillable, single-use tanks (camping
propane containers) because they are difficult and expensive to recycle. Switch
to refillable tanks wherever possible. Never place a pressurized container in
your garbage; they can cause explosions when compacted in collection trucks.
Enjoy the convenience of propane year-round with these safety
tips. Remember: when in doubt, don't take chances.
Background Photo Credit: Destination British Columbia