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Highest standard of fire safety extended to all homes

Fire and smoke alarm regulations will be changed to ensure all homes have the highest level of protection following the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Legislation will be amended to extend the “existing high standard” required in private rented housing to all homes in Scotland, the Scottish Government said.

This will mean that private homes must have at least one smoke alarm installed in the room most frequently used, at least one smoke alarm in spaces such as hallways and landings and at least one heat alarm in every kitchen.

A carbon monoxide detector will also be required in all homes and there will be a 10-year age limit for alarms.

The changes have been announced following a consultation on fire and smoke alarms which was launched after the Grenfell Tower disaster last June in which 71 people died when a fire ravaged the London high-rise.

Housing Minister Kevin Stewart said: “Fires and fatalities from fires are decreasing but even one death is one too many.

“Scotland already has rigorous standards for smoke and fire alarms developed over time, with the highest standard currently applied to new-build and private rented housing.

Now everyone will benefit from the same level of protection, whether you own your home, or rent from a social or private landlord.

Housing Minister Kevin Stewart

“The tragic events at Grenfell Tower last year emphasised how important building and fire safety is, which is why we brought forward our consultation on this issue.

“Now everyone will benefit from the same level of protection, whether you own your home, or rent from a social or private landlord.”

The Housing (Scotland) Act 1987 will be amended to reflect the new requirements.

All alarms will have to be ceiling-mounted, and should be interlinked.

Assistant Chief Officer David McGown, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) Director of Prevention and Protection, said: “The presence of working smoke and heat detectors have been proven to significantly reduce casualties and fatalities occurring as a result of fires within the home.

“SFRS therefore welcome and support the next steps from this consultation which will undoubtedly improve home safety for all residents, regardless of tenure.”

Source: BT.com