Press Room

NEWS from BoatUS
Boat Owners Association of The United States
880 S. Pickett St., Alexandria, VA 22304
BoatUS Press Room at www.BoatUS.com/PressRoom

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press Contact: D. Scott Croft, 703-461-2864, SCroft@BoatUS.com

Safely Keeping Off the Chill

BoatUS' Four Safety Tips for Electric Heaters Aboard Boats

Photo Caption: BoatUS has a few tips to prevent fires from electric heaters this winter.
Download hi-res photo.
 

 ALEXANDRIA, Va. February 18, 2011 – Problems often come from the limitations of the boat’s own AC electrical system - also commonly called “shore power” and used while the boat is docked. Additionally, some portable heaters’ poor design features make them a bad choice for use aboard boats.

“Portable electric heaters can work well in a house, but putting them aboard a boat requires more vigilance,” said BoatUS Director of Damage Avoidance Bob Adriance. “Our boat insurance claims files show that fires often originate with boat’s electrical systems, as they can’t handle the high amperage. And some portable heaters don’t have tip-over switches that automatically shut them off after wave action knocks them over.”

BoatUS has these top four tips when using a portable electric heater:

  1. Turn if off: Never leave a portable electric heater on while you are away from the boat or when you go to bed.

  1. “Tip Over” switch is a must: Many portable heaters are not intended to be used for unstable locations and don’t have wide bases needed to keep them upright when another boat’s wake strikes your boat. Use only an electric heater with a tip-over switch that will shut off the heater automatically if it gets knocked over.

  1. Keep the heater separate: Never use another high-amperage appliance on the same receptacle with a portable electric heater.

  1. Don’t take the “Extension:” Never use an extension cord with an electric heater.

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 About BoatUS:

BoatUS – Boat Owners Association of The United States – is the nation’s leading advocate for recreational boaters providing over half million members with government representation, programs and money-saving services such as marine insurance and on-the-water towing. For membership information visit www.BoatUS.com or call 800-395-2628.