By Don Casey
Revised by BoatUS editors in April 2012
Straight-blade receptacles--like those in your home--are increasingly less common as marina outlets, and for good reason. Water and electricity are a potentially lethal combination, and straight blade receptacles have no provision for preventing rain or washdown water from reaching the contacts.
Even if shorepower demands can be met with a 15-amp service, you should still equip your boat with a 30-amp inlet fitting to allow the use of a shorepower cord with waterproof plugs. In addition to the safety benefit, you will find that because the 30-amp locking receptacle has become the norm at most U.S. and Caribbean marinas, a 30-amp inlet on your boat will minimize or eliminate altogether your need for adapters.