British Columbia Safety Authority

British Columbia Safety Authority

May 13, 2009 13:30 ET

BC Safety Authority: Have a Safe Trip With Your RV

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - May 13, 2009) - BC Safety Authority -

Do your vacation plans include using an RV?

RVs, or recreational vehicles, have become a regular part of vacation plans - allowing British Columbians to go almost anywhere with the comforts of home.

But before you hit the road with your RV, the BC Safety Authority (BCSA) would like to remind you of some safety precautions to ensure that your vacation is fun and worry free.

"RVs have a propane system that must be well-maintained and properly used, just like the rest of your vehicle," says Wayne Lock, BCSA provincial gas safety manager. Lock recommends owners have their RV propane system checked regularly.

"The propane in your RV allows you a lot of convenience, but remember that propane is combustible and must be used correctly. Basic safety checks can go a long way in ensuring you and your family have a safe trip."

Here are some safety reminders if you plan on using an RV:

- Be familiar with the RV manufacturer's operating and maintenance instructions. Ask for safety instructions if you are renting an RV.

- Have propane equipment checked and maintained regularly by a vehicle shop registered with the BCSA.

- When using a propane stove or oven, open a vent or window and turn on the range hood fan to let any possible carbon monoxide out.

- Never use stove burners or oven for space heating. They are designed for cooking only.

- Never use portable propane camping equipment inside your RV (e.g. camp stoves, barbecues, lanterns, catalytic or radiant heaters).

- Never use charcoal barbecues or portable liquid fuel camping equipment inside your RV. Liquid fuels include kerosene, camp fuel, butane, gasoline, alcohol, lamp oil, etc.

- Propane smells like rotten eggs. If you think you smell propane, get everyone out of the RV immediately.

- Have everyone leave the RV and get medical attention if an individual shows physical symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning (headaches, nausea, dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, impaired judgment, lack of physical coordination).

- Secure propane tanks outside the RV in an upright position when traveling.

- Never use, store, or transport propane cylinders or liquid fuels in the passenger space or living area of your RV.

- Don't transport or use propane containers that are damaged, show signs of corrosion, have been exposed to fire, or appear to be leaking.

- After exchanging propane cylinders, always check connections for leaks with an approved leak detector solution, or with a mixture of 50% liquid soap and 50% water applied with a paint brush.

- Propane cylinders must be inspected and requalified every 10 years. New cylinder valves may have additional safety features (overfill protection and safety valve to prevent propane from being released when the valve is opened but not connected).

- When buying propane equipment for your RV or camping, ensure that the product is certified for Canada.

If you'd like more safety tips, visit the BCSA website at and download the RV Propane Safety brochure by going to Safety Information - Public Safety Tips - Recreational Vehicles.

The BC Safety Authority is an independent, self-funded organization that inspires safety excellence in British Columbia by partnering with business, industry and the general public to enhance the safety of technical systems, products, equipment and work.

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