Progress for renters at risk

A new report from the House of Commons Housing, Communities and Local Government select committee published last week on the ‘private rented sector’ and came with good news for those in private rented accommodation who are at risk from carbon monoxide poisoning.

Under current regulations, landlords in England and Wales are only required to provide a carbon monoxide alarm in properties with a solid fuel burning appliance, i.e. a wood burning stove. This is in practice only about 8% of the rented property stock, leaving the vast majority of renters potentially at risk. However, in Scotland there is no distinction and landlords are legally required to provide CO alarms in all properties.

Energy UK’s CO Be Alarmed! campaign has been calling for the Government to amend the regulations to protect all tenants regardless of the fuel type, and worked closely with the All-Party Parliamentary Carbon Monoxide Group who published the ‘Carbon monoxide alarms: tenants safe and secure in their homes’ report five months ago which urged Government to go further.

And the good news is the Housing, Communities and Local Government Select Committee agrees. The report from last week states:

“We support the finding of the All-Party Parliamentary Carbon Monoxide Group (APPCOG) that legislation should be amended to make it explicit and mandatory for landlords to install carbon monoxide alarms in the rooms of private rented properties containing any fuel-burning appliance.”

The ball is now in the Government’s court and CO Be Alarmed! looks forward to their response to the select committee’s report – as well as the response to their own consultation on this issue which closed back in January.

We are hopeful of positive change to ensure more renters are protected from the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning.

In the meantime CO Be Alarmed! campaign urges everyone to protect themselves and their family by following the ABC guide – Do you have an Alarm fitted? Have you tested it and are the Batteries working? Have you had an up to date gas Check?