New regulations re Smoke and CO alarms

by Readers Question

10:10 AM, 14th March 2015
About 4 years ago

New regulations re Smoke and CO alarms

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New regulations re Smoke and CO alarms

What are peoples thoughts on the new legal requirements to install new smoke and CO alarms? New regulations re Smoke and CO2 alarms

Smoke and CO alarms new requirement

The Housing Minister, Brandon Lewis announced yesterday that landlords will be required to have both smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms installed in all rental properties.

The changes are scheduled to come into effect soon after their Parliamentary approval, on 10 October 2015.

Fire and rescue authorities will be directed to provide support with the implementation – providing local private landlords with free alarms.

Brandon Lewis commented:

“In 1988 just 8% of homes had a smoke alarm installed – now it’s over 90%.

The vast majority of landlords offer a good service and have installed smoke alarms in their homes, but I’m changing the law to ensure every tenant can be given this important protection.

But with working smoke alarms providing the vital seconds needed to escape a fire, I urge all tenants to make sure they regularly test their alarms to ensure they work when it counts. Testing regularly remains the tenant’s responsibility.”

The move will help prevent up to 36 deaths and 1,375 injuries a year.

Expectations of a landlord  –

  • Smoke alarms installed on every floor of the rental property, and test them at the start of every tenancy.
  • Carbon monoxide alarms in all high risk rooms – such as those where a solid fuel heating system is installed.

Landlord failing to meet the new regulations could face a maximum £5,000 civil penalty.

Regards

Denise



Comments

Mark Alexander

10:13 AM, 14th March 2015
About 4 years ago

Hi Denise

This is as good as law already, in that if you don’t have fire alarms and a tenant is killed or injured in a fire or CO poisoning you can be held liable anyway. I have fire alarms installed in all of my properties. I have also installed CO alarms on the same basis, they cost peanuts.

I have recently heard that if you write to your tenants recommending that they contact the fire brigade to discuss fire and CO alarms it has the following positive advantages:-

1) If they don’t do it you have very solid grounds for defence if the worst should happen
2) The fire brigade in most areas will provide and fit alarms for tenants at no charge
.

Denise G

10:40 AM, 14th March 2015
About 4 years ago

Well we do fit smoke alarms on every floor already and also have a clause in our TAs recommending our tenants test them regularly as well as reminding that they need to renew batteries at least annually. We suggest the anniversary of their moving in date ... but how about the government consider bringing in matching penalties for tenants who neglect, or worse still tamper with, the fitted detectors and alarms?
I can't tell you how many times we've done a LIV to find a battery that's dead flat or worse still has been completely removed. Ww will defo consider fitting CM monitors - or maybe writing your suggested letter to all of our tenants - thanks Mark

Gary Nock

8:41 AM, 15th March 2015
About 4 years ago

Mark it says carbon monoxide in all high risk rooms. I wonder if this will be required in flats which are all electric where there is minimal risk of carbon monoxide poisoning? Just looked at the cost of the combined smoke and CO alarms and these are about £30 each. But if you have wired smoke alarms I guess you could just put a separate CO battery alarm in for £10-£15

Gary Nock

9:03 AM, 15th March 2015
About 4 years ago

Just looked at the Private Members Bill proposals:

Clause 2 (1) of the Bill would require the Secretary of State to make regulations under Section 15 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 to require, as part of landlords’ gas safety obligations, a functioning audible carbon monoxide detector to be provided in rented dwellings where a fixed gas, liquid or solid fuel appliance is installed"

So logically, which I accept is a leap of faith for government when trying to regulate the PRS we shall only need to install where gas or solid fuel is used. So trip to B and Q for a bulk order cancelled!

Gary Nock

9:17 AM, 15th March 2015
About 4 years ago

The link to the Bill is
http://services.parliament.uk/bills/2013-14/smokealarmsprivaterentedsector.html

But on the page it says the Bill will go no further! Confusing or what?

Polly Robins

16:52 PM, 15th March 2015
About 4 years ago

I was wondering if anyone could give me some advice on costs on fitting smoke and heat detectors to meet the new regulations.
I rent a one bedroom flat out in Scotland and I am currently looking into installing a heat detector in the kitchen, a smoke alarm in the hall and another in the lounge, all to be wired and linked together.
I have been given a price of £500 for the work to be done - does this sound about right? I can't believe it would cost that much! If anyone has experience and rough prices I would be grateful to hear from you.
Thank you in advance Polly

Gary Nock

19:45 PM, 15th March 2015
About 4 years ago

That seems a lot. Unless Scottish Regs are much more stringent than UK. Wired smoke alarms only required in UK in builds after 1992 I think. Battery smoke alarms do the job. Don't know what you mean by "heat detectors". But I have had wired smoke alarms done in two rooms for £150.

9:04 AM, 16th March 2015
About 4 years ago

Hi Gary, thats because the sneaky Gov have renamed the bill... heres its progress

http://services.parliament.uk/bills/2014-15/householdsafetycarbonmonoxidedetectors.html

Craig Holmes

10:16 AM, 16th March 2015
About 4 years ago

Hi, Our electrician is carrying out the work for £225, this includes 2 x smoke detectors and one heat detector. It also includes trunking as unless its a property with access to the loft space then this is also required..

Polly Robins

10:46 AM, 16th March 2015
About 4 years ago

Hi Gary,
Thanks for your reply. These are the new regulations that I was emailed from my local council in Scotland:-

• One functioning smoke alarm in every room which is frequently used by the occupants for general daytime living purposes
• One functioning smoke alarm in every circulation space, such as hallways and landings
• One heat alarm in every kitchen
• All alarms should be interlinked

So, my good old battery smoke alarms are no use now. I think it is over the top personally. I only have a small one bedroom flat. From what I gather my £500 quote is way too much!
I will get other quotes done. Thanks again Polly

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