Senior fire officers have urged the Government to confirm that it is going to formally enact new laws which could save dozens of lives every year when the Energy Act is debated under a 10-minute rule Bill in Parliament tomorrow.
The Act, which was given Royal Assent in December last year, includes an amendment allowing the Government to bring in new powers requiring all landlords to fit smoke alarms / carbon monoxide detectors in all private rented homes.
But before making a final decision the Government has been reviewing evidence about the potential impact of introducing the regulations. Former Local Government and Fire Service Minister Nick Raynsford is now introducing a 10-minute rule Bill in Parliament calling for the change to be made straightaway.
Mark Cashin, Chair of the Chief Fire Officers Association (CFOA) Home Safety Committee, said: “We are delighted that this key public safety issue is again being debated in Parliament and we hope the Government takes the opportunity to confirm the necessary legislation.
“It is a small change which will improve the safety of families and stop dozens of people from losing their lives to fire each year. The cost to landlords is small, with a ten year sealed alarm costing around £15.
“And it is a change which has overwhelming support – from the public, from businesses and from landlords themselves. In a public survey 93% said they supported the legislation while a survey of businesses saw 91% in favour, while the National Landlords Association (NLA) and British Property Federation have also given their support.”
The Deputy Chief Fire Officer for Cheshire, added that while death and injuries from fires have reduced considerably in recent years, the majority of victims continue to be those who are most vulnerable, often living in private rented accommodation.
CFOA’s National Home Safety Committee has set out the smoke alarm legislation has one of its six key objectives.