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Working alarms save lives – in the event of a fire in a dwelling, occupiers are at least four times more likely to die if there are no working smoke alarms.
The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 came into force on 1 October 2015. Private sector landlords are now required to have at least one smoke alarm installed on every storey of their properties and a carbon monoxide alarm in any room containing a solid fuel burning appliance (e.g. a coal fire, wood burning stove). After that, the landlord must make sure the alarms are in working order at the start of each new tenancy.
The requirements will be enforced by Derby City Council Housing Standards Team who can impose a fine of up to £5,000 where a landlord fails to comply with a remedial notice. They have published a statement of principles it proposes to follow in determining the amount of penalties imposed by the Council under the Regulations.
A Q&A Booklet for the Private Rented Sector provides information for Landlords and tenants about the requirements and who they apply to. It is designed as a Q&A to cover the most common situations.
Landlords should be aware that the regulations do not contain all the fire safety requirements which their premises may be subject to. There are fire safety requirements under Part 1 of the Housing Act 2004 and the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.
Landlords should also refer to the LACoRS Housing - Fire Safety guide which gives detailed descriptions of the fire safety requirements for rented properties, including flats and houses in multiple occupation.