On the 1st of October 2022, a new amendment to the Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Alarm Regulation came into force, superseding the previous 2015 regulations. The amendments will affect all properties in the private rental and social housing sectors within England and Wales.
The regulations concern the fitting and installation of smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in a variety of residential buildings, including local authority dwellings, hostels, hotels, and rented homes. The purpose is to ensure the safety of occupants in the event of a fire or carbon monoxide build-up.
Here’s What You Need To Know About How The Amendment Will Affect Your Organisation.
There are two types of alarms that must be fitted in any residential property that features living accommodations: smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms.
Smoke alarms must be placed in any area where people are likely to be present for extended periods of time, such as bedrooms, kitchens, and living rooms, as well as communal areas, whilst carbon monoxide alarms must be fitted within any room where there is a potential for carbon monoxide build-ups, such as boiler rooms, kitchens, and living rooms with wood-burning stoves.
- At least one working smoke alarm must be equipped on each storey of a residential property in which there are one or more rooms used as living accommodations.
- A carbon monoxide alarm must be fitted in every room used as living accommodation that contains a solid fuel-burning appliance (excluding purely gas-powered appliances, such as ovens).
- The alarms in the building must be interlinked so that if one sounds, they all sound.
- Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms must be tested at least once a month and replaced every 10 years.
- Smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms must be repaired or replaced as soon as they are found to be faulty.
Who Is Responsible For Making The Changes?
It is the responsibility of the person who has day-to-day control of the property to make sure that it meets the requirements of the Regulations. This may include local authorities, private landlords, managing agents and/or tenants.
Private rented sector landlords must give their tenants written information about how to test the alarms. Where a landlord uses a managing agent to manage their property, it will be the responsibility of the managing agent to comply with these Regulations on behalf of the landlord. Local authority landlords and housing associations should review their tenant handbooks and tenancy agreements and update their tenancy agreements accordingly to the amended Regulations.
Hotel and hospitality business owners should also review their health and safety policy documents to accommodate the amended regulations.
Whilst there is no requirement for commercial properties, e.g. shops and offices without living accommodations, to have smoke or carbon monoxide alarms installed, we always recommend doing so in order to protect your employees, customers and premises.
Find Out More
To avoid penalties, it is crucial that commercial landlords and housing authorities are aware of these changes and put the relevant steps in place to ensure compliance. Please do not hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you further.
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