Safety towing appliances impacted by new Gas Regulations
Vital towing safety appliances are now permitted in a “controlled area” surrounding gas cylinders and gas cylinder compartments on boats and caravans, following changes to industry-relevant Gas Regulations.
Amendments to the AS/NZS 5601.2 Gas Installations-LP Gas installations in caravans and boats for non-propulsive purposes came into affect October 1.
GAS REGULATIONS RE-CLASSES IGNITION RISKS AND INCLUDES NEW CLAUSES
Some appliances including trailer plugs, ESC equipment and break-away brake controllers are now no-longer classified as “ignition risks” and can be installed within the ”controlled area” surrounding gas cylinders and gas cylinder compartments, according to the Standard amendments.
“Fully encapsulated” electrical equipment meeting “strict conditions” outlined in clauses that mitigate ignition risks within the Standard can also sit within this controlled area zone.
CONTROLLED AREA REPLACING CONE-SHAPED HAZARDOUS ZONE
The newly-defined controlled area replaces the “cone-shaped hazardous zone” in the previous version of this Standard and covers a smaller size and shape at the base of the cone.
This controlled area applies to compartments that can be opened to expose ignition sources within the envelope of the controlled area. This may affect compartments such as front boots, equipment boxes or similar that contain electrical equipment or appliances, or make provision for their later addition by consumers.
Other important changes to the Standard include:
- Introduction of Type 27 valves – there is a transition period on these valves.
- LP Gas Cylinders used on a caravan (or similar RV) are limited to a maximum size of 25L capacity (nominal 10kg).
- Multiple gas cylinders connected to a caravan (or similar RV) installation are limited to a maximum of 2 cylinders. Any unconnected or spare cylinders that are carried must meet the same stowage and clearance requirements as a connected cylinder.
- Improved clause relating to internal gas cylinder compartments, with clearer wording around access, venting and labelling requirements.
- Introduction of a new consumer warning label to be located on or near the entry door of caravans
- Overhead clearances above a cooker must be in line with the manufacturer’s instructions for both the cooking appliance and rangehood/ exhaust fan with the largest specified clearance applied, or 650mm if there are no manufacturer instructions.
Some requirements that have been in previous versions of the standard have been reinforced:
- All appliances connected to the gas installation must have flame safeguard systems on all burners. This includes appliances connected through a quick-connect device such as an external gas bayonet.
- Stowed gas appliances must have a means of isolation to prevent the flow of gas when the appliance is stowed. It is noted that disconnection of a bayonet fitting is considered a suitable isolation, but additional shut-off features are encouraged.
- Gas cylinder mounting straps must include an insulating layer to protect the surface of a gas cylinder against damage and corrosion.