Smoke alarm regime will be compulsory in all homes

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Every home in Scotland is to be equipped to the highest level of protection from smoke and fire - by law.

The Scottish Government move follows a consultation on fire and smoke alarms, and will mean the existing standard required in private rented homes must be extended to all homes.

This will mean having 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.

Alarms will have a shelf life of 10 years before needing replaced, and a carbon monoxide detector will be required in all homes.

Alarms will all have to be ceiling-mounted, and should be interlinked.

The changes will involve amendments to the Housing (Scotland) Act.

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.

“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.”

ACO David McGown, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service 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.”

The Housing (Scotland) Act 1987 will be amended to reflect the new requirements, and the amended standard will cover all homes.

Alarms will all have to be ceiling-mounted, and should be interlinked.