Proper Fueling Procedures

To prevent onboard fires, it is critical that you follow proper fueling procedures.

Gasoline vapors are heavier than air and can spread rapidly into enclosed spaces. You should check the bilges and all closed compartments for gasoline vapors. The sniff test is the most effective method of detecting fuel leaks. Proper fueling techniques also keep our water clean and safe and help our aquatic life to thrive in a healthier environment. 

You are legally required to report fuel spills and to take prompt action to clean up any spills that may occur. If you have spilled a petroleum product, immediately stop the source of the leak, use oil absorbent pads or booms, and notify your marina contact. If you do not have access to oil absorbent material, notify the marina personnel immediately as they should have such material on hand. The proper way to fuel your boat is as follows:

  • Secure the boat to the dock
  • Switch off the engine
  • Extinguish all open flames
  • Do not smoke
  • Do not use electrical switches
  • Close ports, hatches, and doors
  • Ensure all passengers are ashore
  • Determine the quantity of fuel required and verify that it is the correct type of fuel for your vessel
  • Hold the hose nozzle firmly against the fill pipe opening
  • Do not overfill. Leave the tank 5-10% empty, or use a catch device for the overfill discharge
  • Wait for the nozzle to stop dripping before removing it from tank and/or use petroleum absorption pads to catch splash back and drips from the nozzle\
  • Wipe up all spillages\
  • Open ports, hatches, and doors to ventilate
  • Turn blower on for four minutes minimum
  • Do the sniff test
  • Start the engine(s)
  • Re-board passengers
  • Untie from the dock and cast off

For portable tanks do the following:

  • Tanks six gallons and smaller should be removed from the boat
  • Add appropriate amount of oil for 2-cycle outboards to fuel tank (If not using premixed fuel)
    Make sure hose nozzle is in contact with rim of tank
  • Do not overfill
  • After filling, secure tank to the boat so it will not slide around while underway