Aico highlights changing regulations for smoke and carbon monoxide alarms
12 December 2021
FOLLOWING ON from a recent Government consultation process, the regulations for smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in England are set to expand for both privately and socially rented homes. The amendments will seek to increase resident safety and bring more consistency to regulations between the rental sectors.
The consultation proposed to amend the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 and Approved Document J, with the aim of extending the existing private rented legislation to encompass socially rented properties. It also considered the important question of whether the existing legislation was sufficient enough in scope.
The amendments will improve fire safety within social housing, with landlords now being required to install at least one smoke alarm on each storey of their properties.
There are several amendments to the requirements for carbon monoxide alarms to bring greater protection to residents. The first requires all private and social landlords to install a carbon monoxide alarm in any room of a property that has a fixed combustion appliance, such as a boiler, warm air heaters, fires and also water heaters (but excluding gas cookers).
In addition, it will be a legal obligation for landlords to install a carbon monoxide alarm in any home when a new fixed combustion appliance is fitted (again excluding gas cookers). Although gas cookers are exempt from the proposed legislation changes, it’s still recommended within the British Standards that these appliances are also covered.
By law, all landlords will also be required to repair or replace alarms once notified of a fault. Regular alarm testing will remain residents’ own responsibility.
The Government consultation also suggests that more information should be provided on the siting of alarms and that the guidance will signpost towards the relevant British Standards for installation. Any alarms used should be third party certified to the relevant British Standards: BS EN 14604 for smoke alarms and BS EN 50291 for carbon monoxide alarms.
Andy Speake, national technical manager for Aico, commented: “At Aico, we strive to promote Bdest Practice and deliver safer homes, so it’s great to see the proposed amendments to the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 and Approved Document J. The recommendations are welcomed by all of us working in the industry. The expansion of the regulations will certainly bring greater levels of protection for the residents of rented homes right across England.”
*Further detail is available online at www.aico.co.uk