ALERT: Does your state require permit to alter? - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-13-2014, 01:20 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Timber Wolf View Post
"I have a friend who works for the State Parks here. He says every year they hear about campers found dead from propane leaks in their trailer"
There seems to be a real shortage of reports, outside of that source that is, that are reporting deaths from "Propane Leaks" in RV's. And, most of them seemed to be posted by lawyers trying to drum up similar cases.....

Most of the posts I could find pertained to someone that left burners ON, or a couple of cases where manufacturing faults caused lines to leak, but the majority of deaths in RV's from propane seemed to be from those that did not provide adequate venting, for free standing heaters or used the stovetop burners for space heating, both, basically, operator error.

In one case, after a fire started from a stove top valve was left ON, their atty argued that the smell from the lp gas filling the trailer could not be detected by either occupant and an explosion occurred when the wife got up and lit her "Morning Cigarette" . Here's the line they used: The odorant added to the propane was rendered useless (due to the phenomenon of olfactory desensitization), and they could not smell the odorant when they awoke the following morning.

We wear safety belts when we drive, and have smoke & CO detectors in our homes. So it makes the same sense to have fire, CO and LP gas detectors in our trailers, pretty much obviating most risks except those that are self inflicted.

In closing, keep in mind that they certainly also hear about campers that died of heart attacks during marital activities, should we stop that as well?
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Old 10-13-2014, 02:05 PM   #16
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Propane Fires?????

The danger of propane is frequently mentioned. In fact the probability of a propane sourced problem is extremely low.

According to the latest national statistics, there were, on average, 3,100 RV fires each year from 2002 through 2005.

These fires caused seven deaths, 62 injuries and approximately $41 million in damages in each of those years. These statistics should give all RVers pause. Jaimie Hall Bruzenak interviews RV fire safety educator Mac McCoy, better known as "Mac the Fire Guy," to find out what RVers should know to stay fire-safe on the road.

About 75 percent of RV fires have their source in the 12-volt system, and they usually smolder long before they burst into flames.

RV Fire Safety

Realistic Propane Safety Statistics

Accidents do occur with and around propane but what many will have consumers believe is that propane is an unsafe fuel. But in reality, LP Gas usage statistics combined with accident statistics tell a much different story that is more accurate than what skeptic would have you believe.

The statistics provided below are based on information collected and provided by the NFPA between 2000 and 2004 listing LP Gas as the first material ignited in home structure fires. In other words, propane (LP Gas) was the fuel that "started" the fire. In 2001, 9.4 million homes used LP Gas. Numbers don't lie and neither do facts. Make your own decision.2000-2004


LP Gas Home Structure Fires Statistics

Average Annual Home Structure Fires 1,390
Average Annual Civilian Fire Deaths 23
Average Annual Civilian Fire Injuries 193

Based on these numbers provided by the NFPA, let's calculate the real value in statements such as "propane is a very dangerous fuel" or "propane burns houses down all the time".

.000148 residential structures burned every time LP Gas was the first material ignited
.0000025 people died in every incident of LP Gas being the first material ignited
.000021 people were injured in every incident where LP Gas was the first material ignited
The numbers and statements above seem kind of silly because the occurances of propane fires, injuries and deaths were so very rare for the total number of residential structures using propane. Using these same statistics, look at propane safety from another perspective:

1 in 6,762 homes experienced a fire
1 in 48,704 people were injured
1 in 408,695 people were killed
Skeptics will tell you that propane is so terribly unsafe, that it frequently burns or kills people and blows houses up all the time but did you know that:

Around 100 people die annually as a result of being struck by lightning
About 7,000 people die annually resulting from prescription drug filling errors
90 to 100 people die each year from bee or wasp stings
Around 200 people die each year in floods

Just a few thoughts.....
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Old 10-13-2014, 02:22 PM   #17
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A good friend of mine died in her motor home, just after retiring, due to a propane leak. When it comes to safety, I don't think we can be too cautious. Safety standards are there for a reason; she didn't make mods on her RV, but it was an older model and it is unfortunate that all of her systems weren't checked periodically. She lived in Washington State, by the way, as do I. There are many RVs, new and old, that should not be on the road.
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Old 10-13-2014, 02:53 PM   #18
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Whew!...
For a moment there I thought there may be a problem!
Fortunately I live in the U.S.
Also fortunately, every mod I would ever do comes under "adjustment and maintenance!"
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:00 PM   #19
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I can see requiring an inspection for mods done to electrical and propane systems unless done by a licensed person. But there should be no need for plans and a permit. My guess is that they just wanted to be able to require these for people living permanently in one place in a trailer or motorhome. I can't see them tracking down people with RVs to see if they've made any changes. On the other hand, they do seem to like the money that comes with permits.
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Old 10-13-2014, 04:09 PM   #20
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Yep, prescription drugs kill! I'm gonna tell the pharmacist where he can stick 'em!

But seriously, I can relate. My father fell victim to a prescription drug error. It didn't kill him, but it ended his work career because it messed up his short term memory too badly.
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Old 10-13-2014, 04:40 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Timber Wolf View Post
Umm, no. I am a Carpenter, have several construction related licenses (Building, Mechanical, Plumbing, Electrical). Grew up on a real farm, and have been involved in building every kind of building there is, except maybe a dam. My fear of propane comes from having lived in an older trailer that had propane appliances, because fire burns and gas & smoke kills. I have been burnt, smoked, and gassed enough in my life. My fear comes FROM understanding propane appliances and the dangers involved. Fire in a very small trailer, is very, very bad. People advocating others to not worry about aging gas appliances (and associated piping) in old trailers is doing them a grave (pun intended) dis-service. I have a friend who works for the State Parks here. He says every year they hear about campers found dead from propane leaks in their trailer. They even have a name for them, "Pinks", because appearantly they turn pink in the process (I am kind of a pink hue to start with). And this is in Florida, were you would think not a lot of heaters and such are required!
Propane asphyxiation would not turn a person "pink".
Carbon Monoxide poisoning will. It is the byproduct of combustion, so a leaky plenum or exhaust pipe can cause a "pink", but not a propane leak.
Propane also has an odorant mixed in for detection, so death by fire from a propane leak would be more likely than asphyxiation from raw propane.
Especially since propane is heavier than air.
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Old 10-13-2014, 05:07 PM   #22
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CO asphyxiation in an RV is more apt to come from using the stove to heat the RV, using a portable LP heater, or even using a charcoal BBQ for heating or cooking inside, without ventilation.

Look at my earlier post for the Lawyers take on peeps that can't smell LP odorant
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Old 10-13-2014, 05:34 PM   #23
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Prescription Drugs

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Originally Posted by Mike Magee View Post
Yep, prescription drugs kill! I'm gonna tell the pharmacist where he can stick 'em!
Every Prescription drug has a alpha numeric code on it. In about 15 seconds Google can tell you what you have. I always check mine.

For example V-3592 is Acetaminophen and hydrocodone bitartrate 500 mg / 5 mg.

Put Rx before the code. If it doesn't have a code, don't take it.....
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Old 10-14-2014, 10:47 AM   #24
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crazy idea.....

here's a crazy idea....

if one is REALLY worried about propane accumulation from a leak and/or CO poisoning.... just drill a hole in the center of the floor of the RV and install a floor drain (as in a bathroom or garage)... told ya it was crazy

but seriously...as propane is heavier than air accumulation can't happen....and it only takes a window cracked open just a bit to take care of any CO issues (before I turn in, I always crack a window....just can't go to sleep otherwise).....a drain would take care of both issues

not only a "two birds with one stone" solution....if you spilled something in the trailer you could just squeegee it to the center of the floor...

add a removable screen on the outlet (insects) and a removable plug for use when driving on dusty roads......and you're done.....

it won't cost a hundered and fifty bucks, it won't expire after a while so you won't have to buy another one....and nobody is going to ask you when's the last time you had your drain inspected.....but hey, you can't have everything....where would you put it?
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Old 10-14-2014, 11:41 AM   #25
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Quote: "crazy idea..... Here's a crazy idea...."

Next time anyone opens a window and it's cooler outside than inside, note which way the air flows....

Accumulation can and will happen and only what LP happens to be over the hole, and when the temp outside is not greater than inside, might exit.

But, as most leaks happen in cabinets, where it an accumulate, and not in the middle of the floor. Me thinks that an appropriate LP/CO alarm is the only suitable answer.
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Old 10-14-2014, 12:27 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Bobbie Mayer View Post
I can see requiring an inspection for mods done to electrical and propane systems unless done by a licensed person. But there should be no need for plans and a permit. .
Here is the thing, normally when a permit is required the body that issues the permit also follows up with an inspection to ensure it has been done correctly & to permit and plan submitted ... or at least that is how it is done in regards to permits etc in these parts. For example lots of folks like to complain about having to take out a building permit to build a deck on their home & believe that building permits are just doing a money grab when in fact its for the homeowners protection as well as any future owners protection. There are lots of people out there who claim to know what they are doing but somewhere down the road someone may have the misfortune of discovering that was not the case. Don't believe me just take a look at some of the post here where people are asking for help to sort out some handy work of the trailers previous owner!
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Old 10-16-2014, 02:29 PM   #27
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I live in Washington, and I knew our state can be pretty stupid, but this is just ridiculous! And... they can just kiss my @ss if they think I'm going to pull a permit to make modifications to my little egg!!
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Old 10-16-2014, 06:45 PM   #28
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I live in Washington, and I knew our state can be pretty stupid, but this is just ridiculous! And... they can just kiss my @ss if they think I'm going to pull a permit to make modifications to my little egg!!

Unfortunately, Washington does not have a monopoly on ridiculous. It seems to be in many places.


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