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Marina Electrical Systems


BEST Engineering on Marina Electrical Systems











ON JULY 4, 2012, THE FAMILIES OF A 10-year-old and a 11-year-old boys were celebrating together on Lake Cherokee, located in the small northwestern Tennessee town of Bean Station. The day started like any other holiday on the lake, filled with swimming, boating, and barbecuing. That afternoon, though, they  were swimming in a marina when they received an electrical shock. One boy died instantly from electrocution, and the other died in the hospital the next day. Several other people who jumped into the water to save the boys were injured, but survived. An investigation found that the source of the electricity was current leaking from a boat that was plugged into the marina’s electrical system.


Electric shock drowning, or ESD, has gained nationwide attention over the last few years due to high-profile incidents that have led to deaths, mostly among children and young adults. Two children in Missouri died of ESD on the same day as the two boys lost their lives. “This has been a hard thing to process because it could have been prevented,” said one of the Mothers “ People just aren’t aware you can get shocked in the water like this.” Sadly, incidents like this are on the rise, but they can be eliminated with a proper ground fault detection system at your marina.


Ground faults within boats and within the marina wiring system need to be eliminated:


* The National Electrical Code (NEC) requires a ground detection system

as of the 2011 edition and later:


                  Article 555.3:  The main overcurrent protective device that feeds the

        floating structure shall have ground fault protection not exceeding100 mA. Ground fault protection of each individual branch or feeder circuit shall be permitted as a suitable alternative.


* LEAKAGE CURRENT iinto the water carries grave risks  


* WASTED ELECTRICITY IS ELIMINATED...At Heritage Marina we found that we were wasting approximately $70/month from one boat alone due to faulty wiring within the vessel.


* A GROUND FAULT MONITOR detects and isolates bad circuits, and sends a notification via email to the Dockmaster.




 may come in at anytime and plug

 into your system....placing the

 entire Marina at risk ! You can never

 know which vessels plugging into

 your electrical system may have

 improper wiring, placing electric

 current into the water around your



Other Marina Safety Requirements:

NFPA 303 Fire Protection Standard for Marinas and Boatyards:


5.20.1 An inspection of all electrical wiring, ground connections,

conduit, hangers, supports, connections, outlets, appliances,

devices, and portable cables installed or used in a marina,

boatyard, boat basin, or similar establishment shall be

made at regular intervals to ensure a complete inspection at

least annually.


5.20.2 The inspection required in 5.20.1 shall include a test

of ground integrity and polarity.


Lighting upgrades

Heritage Marina had a poor lighting system with many non working fixtures.  The entire system was upgraded with LED lighting including controls for dusk to dawn, along with fixtures that brighten as they were approached.  Each power pedestal was refurbished to include new LED

























  Each Power Pedestal  was refurbished to

  include new LED lamps.  Power Pedestal upgrades

  were completed renewing all corroded connections,

  power sockets and circuit breakers.

  We have the option of adding metering to each

  pedestal for billing of individual vessels

  for electricity in the future.








Heritage Marina hired BEST Engineering to design an upgrade

to the electrical and lighting systems.

We selected a Bender ground fault detection panel  to monitor

all the  circuits feeding shore power receptacles.  

We elected to monitor each circuit separately,

because we did not want the whole marina

shut down due to one boat connecting up in the middle of the night.

When a fault occurs, only that circuit is shut down,

and a warning message is sent via email to the Dockmaster.

Water Photo sai;oat Heritage

Heritage Marina Dockmaster House showing new deck lighting

power Brian

Call Brian to discuss your

Marina's customer's Safety...


Brian Seley PE of BEST Engineering with new Ground Fault

Monitoring  Panel at Heritage Marina

" Doug Decker, of the Heritage Marina says of their experience: " Brian Seley of BEST engineering designed a system that greatly increased our safety and utility here at Heritage Marina.  His design allowed us to receive multiple bids for the electrical work, thus saving Heritage over $40,000 by using the lowest qualified bidder.  If we had just gone to a contractor for this work, I am sure we would have paid much more and not received the quality oversight that an independent engineer allows."

Upgraded Power Pedestal at Heritage Marina

Brian Pool

We Provide Pool Safety Monitoring..


We have the latest Testing Equipment

to detect voltages in the Water


Let us  test your Pool for you

to keep your Pool Safe !