We have been contacted by a customer who has been told by his Insurers, that they will not cover his vehicle if he is carrying more than 5Liters of methanol fuel for his E.F.O.Y power cell.
The customer was understandably concerned about the fact that he would not be insured and asked if we could confirm the regulations.
What Is The EFOY Power Cell?
The E.F.O.Y fuel cell has been developed by S.F.C (Smart Fuel Cell) to provide a portable power solution which can provide up to 1600 watts of power.
The E.F.O.Y power cell is marketed as being quiet, automatic and environmentally friendly and is offered in a 1600, 1200, 900 and 600 watt per hour capacity.
The fuel for the E.F.O.Y is sold in either a 5 or 10 litre cell as standard.
The E.F.O.Y unit on its own has no regulations governing its use but the fuel (methanol) is what seems to be causing some concern.
Following a conversation with the UK suppliers of the E.F.O.Y we established the following facts.
The following is an email received from the Department of Transport to the suppliers which clarifies the legal standing of methanol.
Names and Email adresses have been removed and relaced with XXXXXXXX
From: XXXXXXXX [XXXXXXX@dft.gsi.gov.uk]
Sent: 25 March 2009 10:44
Subject: Methanol Fuel
I have been forwarded your email regarding the carriage of methanol in motorhomes.
The carriage of methanol for personal use is covered by 220.127.116.11(a) of ADR (European Agreement concerning the carriage of Dangerous Goods). Providing there is no more than 60 litres per receptacle and 240 L in total per transport unit then ADR is not applicable.
I’m afraid I cannot comment on insurance companies questioning or refusing policies, as this a matter between the insurer and client.
Dangerous Goods Division
Great Minster House
76 Marsham Street
T: 020 7xxxxxxxxx
F: 020 7xxxxxxxx
So the law is quite clear as regards the carriage of the mathanol fuel cells. As long as you do not have move than 24 x 10 litre containers with you, its not a problem.
Insurance Is It’s Own Law!
We understand that insurance companies have to look at each case and asses the risk.
Therefore we decided to contact one of the leading insurance companies in the UK – Direct Line Insurance.
We contacted the van insurance section and spoke to a polite young man who was very helpful. He listened to the problem and said he would ask the underwriters.
2 minuets later he returned and advised the following.
As far as Direct Line Insurance are concerned, the use of the E.F.O.Y power cell and the carriage of the sealed methanol fuel cells was no problem. The young man did advise that if you had a lot of fuel cells with you that this would not be a good idea but it you are did carry your E.F.O.Y and a couple of the 10 litre fuel cells this would cause no problem to them.
Direct Line Insurance did point out that you must advise them that you have an E.F.O.Y power cell and intended to carry the fuel but assured me that it would not be a problem.
They did advise me however, that insurance quotations are dealt with on an individual basis. (Well they had to say that.)
The E.F.O.F power cell is perfectly safe and legal to use in any motorhome and is quite acceptable to any reasonable insurance company.
We hope this helps.
You can find out all about the E.F.O.Y Power Cell on our website. Just click the image.