Welcome to the British Marine
The British Marine Electronics Association was formed more than fifteen years ago, but its roots go back much further, to when a group of marine electronic specialists got together in the Sixties to swap ideas. The informal gathering has now grown into a respected organisation with over 90 members including manufacturers and waterside dealers, who specialise in the installation and maintenance of marine electrical and electronic systems.
Number one in the Association’s list of aims and objectives is to provide boat owners with a guaranteed level of quality service and support around the UK coast.
To that end, it has instituted a Code of Practice that requires its members to treat customers with courtesy and their boats with respect, to recommend and supply only equipment that is suitable for the marine environment, and to work to recognised standards that ensure every installation is as safe and reliable as possible.
Perhaps, thirty years ago, such safeguards were almost unnecessary. Marine electronics – at least on pleasure craft – was in its infancy. A typical yacht’s fit out probably included an echo sounder and possibly a radio direction finder, but that was about it. GPS and chart plotters were unheard of, radar was rare and an expensive luxury, and logs were mainly mechanical.
The electronics revolution has given owners access to a bewildering array of evermore sophisticated equipment. It undoubtedly improves the performance of their boats, increases the pleasure they provide, and enhances the safety and convenience of life on board – so long as the individual products are right for that particular job and have been properly installed.
That’s quite a big ‘if’, however, because modern electronics depend on very sensitive radio receivers and data handling circuits. They have to amplify and process the very weakest of signals whilst at the same time being able to cope with radio and electrical interference from the engine’s charging system, from domestic services such as fridges and fluorescent lights, and, increasingly from other electrical equipment. There’s no room in this high tech environment for botched, careless, or badly thought- out installations, or for materials which corrode or fatigue when they are exposed to water, sunlight, or repeated movement.
That’s what the BMEA is really about: despite its name, its more than just a trade association, it is committed to providing you – our customers – with the best products, sound advice and professional service at fair prices.
To find out how to join BMEA and to discover more about benefits for members please click here.
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