Get Me Out Of Here

Boat Safety Certificate Day, with new insight

The Boat Safety Certificate is a legally binding necessity, and lasts for 4 years. Call it an “Elf and Safety” BOAT TEST. (A quick dust round doesn’t come into it).

The equivalent for us humans would be passing a mandatory, rigorous health check at the doctor’s surgery every 4 years. With a fungal toenail calling a fail. [Not fit to sail walk]

Anyway, the good ship TT passed with flying colours, we knew she would because we’re safety conscious. In fact Mr Boat Safety himself was well impressed. Recently we’ve done hard graft on things that aren’t even necessary for a BSC, but might be for selling up…

Before he checked the gas lockers, I told him “Now these must be the most beautiful gas lockers (inside) that you’ve ever seen.” Answer, “You’re right they are!”

Dave’s recently de-scaled them, painted with top quality anti-rust paint and then added two layers of engine bay paint. Same goes for the HUGE engine bay itself, which now looks like, (is as) new.

However, we were surprised to discover the BSC “powers that be” in all their ignorance have changed some things on the list. From what were originally “necessary” to simply “advisory,” such as:

  • Vents, no need for them on the doors anymore. Or what we would consider enough on the roof.
  • CO2 monitor – not required.
  • And even fire alarms – not required…

So for others it’s a case of: “Well your boat will pass, but the above is now optional and up to you.” {Mr Boat Safety himself wasn’t happy about it, but was happy to share the truth} 

Think about it though, all of the above are vital to personal safety.

In addition, without such standards, it makes sense that there’d be no “option” for an insurance pay out if (god forbid) necessary. The reply to such a request would almost certainly be a case of:

“If you didn’t have {whatever} basic safety mechanism on board, then bugger off…”

To put it bluntly, in real terms, it would be foolish to ignore those things for two more critical reasons:

Risk to Life itself, and Security.

However, the most important checks are still on the list, and rightly so:

The gas supply to the cooker, testing for leaks, and voltage from the inverter / electrics remain the same. As do the batteries and where / how they’re housed. Including bow thruster batteries. No fire extinguishers out of date, where they’re placed is visible. A fire blanket on view in the kitchen, (or “galley” as they call it on a narrowboat). And of course the wood burning stove gets a good rake over too.

As for the engine itself, it has to be pristine, with no leaks or problems.

So basically we’ve got an over qualified boat…!

Something else we discovered was that you don’t need to have a copy of the report anymore, because it’s all done online. (A seller could lie to an unsuspecting buyer?)

However our Mr Boat Safety is going to send us a copy in the post, as he does for every boat he inspects. Even though that’s no longer necessary either…

Buyers like a recent BSC, even if they don’t know much about the detail, well they do now…

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