From October 1, subject to Parliamentary approval, all private landlords must fit smoke alarms on each floor of their rental properties and install carbon monoxide alarms in rooms containing solid fuel burners. Any landlord who does not comply could face a £5,000 fine.
This will bring private rented properties into line with existing building regulations that already require newly-built homes to have hard-wired smoke alarms installed. The new law will ensure that no rental properties are left unprotected from the risks of fire, and will also significantly improve protection against the equally dangerous carbon monoxide.
To help support local landlords in meeting the new regulations West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service has a limited number of free smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms to give out to relevant landlords whose properties currently do not have alarms.
Safer Communities Manager for West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service, Nicki Peddle, said:
“We know that residents of properties left unprotected against fire or carbon monoxide are at greater risk of being injured or killed in their home. While many private landlords in West Sussex have already voluntarily installed alarms, there are some who haven’t. This is putting their tenants needlessly at risk. From next month it will be their legal responsibility to ensure the right protection is in place.
“We’d urge anyone living in privately rented accommodation without a smoke detector to discuss the situation with their landlord immediately because they may not be aware of the changes to the law. Of course, testing the alarms is just as important as installing them. It is up to the tenants to ensure the detectors are working by carrying out a regular test.”