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New rental sector consultation - smoke and carbon monoxide alarms

Yet another formal government consultation is under way, this time into smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in the private rental sector - although it does not suggest any likely change in the current regulations.

The Department of Communities and Local Government, which has launched the consultation, says it is part of the ongoing health and safety review of rented accommodation in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Current regulations require landlords - or agents acting on their behalf - to have at least one smoke alarm installed on every storey of their properties on which there is a room used wholly or partly as living accommodation, and a carbon monoxide alarm in any room wholly or partly used as living accommodation containing a solid fuel burning appliance.

Current guidance also recommends that tenants test these alarms, ideally monthly.

Responses are required to this consultation by January 9; the results are likely to be used to inform the independent review into building regulations and fire safety being conducted by Dame Judith Hackett, which is expected to report next spring.

You can see the consultation here.

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    I have smoke alarms on all floors in my properties,I have carbon monoxide too for gas hobs and boilers.
    Owing to the overtop safety issues I have disconnected any gas fire (two in fact from two properties)
    I do not want issues with gas fires and do not trust tenants with them.
    I will also over time remove all gas cookers/hobs leaving all electric only.
    The boilers while( gas )will be and have always been serviced every year along with gas certificates these also cover gas cookers/hobs.
    Apart from keeping a fire engine parked outside the properties,I can do no more !

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    Please, please, please to any regulator with a brain - if there are any.

    "YOU CAN NOT RELY ON TENANTS, AGENTS AND MOST PROPERTY OWNERS TO CHECK THESE BLASTED ALARMS!"

    The only interaction most people have with these alarms is take out the flat battery when it starts beeping on a cold night when the last dregs of life in the battery are reduced by the cold. They can always easily do that. NO, they do not go and buy a new battery the next day and fit it. NO NEVER.

    Don't ever think that a property inspection by most lettings agents is going to get new batteries into these alarms or even get them tested. No young lady is going to climb up a ladder to press the test button. If you don't know why that is put your best skirt on, find a small ladder and go and do a property inspection.

    Sorry about the childish capitals. If you want these alarms to function reliably the only real possibility is to have them mains powered and operated through a mains powered controller as you would for a large building. After that you still have to have to have some sort of reporting system to a competent person who no doubt while need to have firemans' training and a skilled person salary.

    Talking about problems with these alarms is not really talking about the problem. The problem is human stupidity and you can not talk about that or you will soon be out of your job. Fortunately I retired long ago. I used to design and sell scientific instruments with very complex controls.

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