Renters at risk from carbon monoxide poisoning

Carbon monoxide alarm
Carbon monoxide alarm

New research for the ‘Carbon Monoxide Be Alarmed!’ campaign has revealed that almost a third of renters in the UK do not have a life-saving CO alarm in their property, with four in five unaware that it is their responsibility - and not their landlord’s - to provide one.

Private renters are still at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning nearly two years after legislation aimed at protecting private tenants came into effect.

Under current regulations, landlords in England and Wales are only required to provide a CO alarm in properties with a solid fuel appliance, i.e. coal or wood burning stoves. However, in Scotland landlords are legally required to provide CO alarms in all properties.

The Carbon Monoxide – Be Alarmed! campaign – run by Energy UK - is calling on Government to take action to extend the legislation to ensure all private tenants are protected.

Lawrence Slade, chief executive of Energy UK and CO Be Alarmed! spokesperson, said:

“Our research shows private renters are still at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning with one in three not having a carbon monoxide alarm fitted at home. That is why we are calling on government to extend the legislation to protect all private renters including those with a gas appliance which is over 80 percent of homes.

“In the meantime we urge tenants to use our simple ABC checklist – Do you have an Alarm fitted? Have you tested it and are the Batteries working? Have you had an up to date gas Check?. This the only way to protect yourself and your family.”

Chris Norris, Head of Policy of the National Landlords Association, said:

“Private landlords have a legal responsibility to provide a CO alarm if solid fuel burning appliances are installed, but landlords, tenants, and home-owners need to be aware that the risk of CO poisoning extents to all types of combustion – including natural gas. Although the risk is small, CO detectors are not expensive and require very little maintenance, which is why the NLA recommends landlords install an alarm in every property with solid fuel, oil, or gas installations. It is best practice and may save a life”

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