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Project SHOUT has welcomed the government’s response to consultation looking at legally requiring carbon monoxide monitors alongside fuel burning heat systems

Campaigners have welcomed government proposals to legally require carbon monoxide (CO) alarms to be fitted in any room with a fixed combustion appliance in rented properties across England.

The proposals, which have been set out in a response to a consultation that closed in January 2021, would apply where technologies such as boilers and water heaters are in use in both social housing and private rented properties.  These amendments will be made to Approved Document J of the Building Regulations.

Project Shout, a national campaign group established to raise awareness of the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning, is among the bodies that have been calling for UK-wide amendments on CO alarm regulations.

The group said that landlords in England would be required under the proposed changes to ensure CO alarms are fitted alongside a range of appliances with the exception of gas cookers.

As part of the government’s response to its consultation to extend regulations for smoke and CO alarms, landlords will also be required to ensure alarms are repaired or replaced when they are notified of a fault.  However, testing these devices will be the responsibility of residents.

Project SHOUT said it recommended that alarms are fitted between one to three metres away from a fuel burning appliance, while also being mounted either to a wall or ceiling in the same room as boilers or other heaters.

Jenny Carlon, campaign director for the group, said the amendments were a welcome step to ensure tenants across the UK have protection against CO poisoning whether in a socially or privately rented property.

She said, “We are pleased with the proposed expansion of the recommendations for all types of rental properties throughout England, however, we feel the recommendations of the updated Scottish Tolerable Standard should also be applied to England and Wales.”

“This will ensure every type of domestic property across the UK, whether owned or rented, will be adequately protected against the dangers of CO.”

Under Scotland’s updated Scottish Tolerable Standard that comes into effect from February 2022, carbon monoxide alarms are legally required in all rooms containing flue-burning appliances such as boilers or stoves.

This will now be a legal requirement in all forms of housing in Scotland, having previously applied to private rented housing only.

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