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MP demands tougher regulations on CO alarms following MFRS partnership study

An MP has demanded tougher regulations to ensure the fitting of carbon monoxide (CO) alarms in all rented properties thanks to work undertaken by Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service and Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU).

Margaret Ritchie MP has tabled an Early Day Motion in response to a study that revealed that around 50 people a year die from preventable CO poisoning, with low income households most at risk.

The study has been running since 2010 and has seen MFRS working in partnership with LJMU to determine levels of carbon monoxide in domestic properties.

As part of the research around 24,000 properties were visited across Merseyside between 2010 and 2011, with findings revealing just 11.5% of homeowners had a CO alarm across the county.

The results have prompted Margaret Ritchie MP to demand an expansion to current legislation, which only requires landlords in England, Wales and Northern Ireland to fit CO alarms in rooms with solid fuel burning appliances.

Under the proposed regulation landlords would be required to fit CO alarms in all rented accommodation to mirror Scotland’s current policy, where all fuel-burning appliances require a CO monitor.

Mark Jones, Station Manager for Community Risk Management (Prevention) said: “We are proud to have been part of this research, which has led to calls for tougher regulations enforcing the fitting of CO alarms.

“The positive findings from this research will also see eight further fire and rescue services gather data to support the project, which will help government groups like the All Party Parliamentary Carbon Monoxide Group (APPCOG) steer future legislation.

“We hope that the government will now follow Scotland’s lead to ensure that tenants in England are provided with equal levels of protection, and that their homes are fitted with CO alarms.

“By harmonizing regulations for carbon monoxide alarms across the UK we can put an end to the needless suffering caused by carbon monoxide poisoning.”

As a result of the work completed by MFRS and LJMU, as well as other supporting groups within APPCOG, the following publications have been produced:

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