Safety update

April 2002 Under-floor fuel lines

This safety update is for all operators. It is issued to raise awareness of the potential serious risk to safety on board a vessel where fuel lines have deteriorated. It provides safe practice tips for how best to reduce the risks involved and to alert people to the risk to safety associated with damaged fuel lines.


A recent incident has prompted Maritime New Zealand to advise the marine industry of a safety concern.

Precautions and procedures

The concern relates to a section of rubberised fuel line fitted to an under deck fuel tank on a StabiCraft 685 boat which was found to be deteriorated and damaged. The section of fuel line fitted to the engine and the section above the deck was found to be normal.

The fuel line in question was identified as being made in USA and described as 4219G - 3/8 inch (9.5mm) - SAE 30R7.

Stabi-Craft New Zealand advise that this specification of fuel line is no longer being fitted and that it has not been used by them by them since 1994.

Safe practice tips

The deterioration and subsequent damage to the fuel line is thought to have been caused by:

  • the nature of the octane fuel and added aromatics in such fuel, and/or
  • poor air circulation under the deck with a possibility of a build-up of fumes.

All operators are advised to check the condition of the fuel lines on their boats (whatever the make) and pay particular attention to the location and ventilation aspects mentioned above.

Original source content - Boat Notice 042002, April: Under-floor fuel lines.

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If you have any questions about this safety update, please contact our Wellington office.


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