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Thread: Changes to standards for fire ands smoke alarms in Scottish homes

  1. #1
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    Default Changes to standards for fire ands smoke alarms in Scottish homes

    Was anyone aware of this? Apparently the from February 2021, there are changes to standards for fire ands smoke alarms in Scottish homes:


    https://www.gov.scot/publications/fi...cottish-homes/

    "Fire and smoke alarms: changes to the law ... "

    " ... The standard requires:

    One smoke alarm installed in the room most frequently used for general daytime living purposes

    One smoke alarm in every circulation space on each storey, such as hallways and landings

    One heat alarm installed in every kitchen

    All alarms should be ceiling mounted and interlinked. ... ".

    Some people are annoyed at the lack of publicity that these changes have had (a friend only learned about this after receiving a leaflet through the door from a company offering to do the work), the cost and point out that it might be difficult to get workmen in to do the work due to the Covid-19 situation for example:

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/...-requirements/

  2. #2
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    Wick
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    Quote Originally Posted by ecb View Post
    Some people are annoyed at the lack of publicity that these changes have had (a friend only learned about this after receiving a leaflet through the door from a company offering to do the work), the cost and point out that it might be difficult to get workmen in to do the work due to the Covid-19 situation for example:
    These people need to think back to June 2017. Do they remember the Grenfell Tower tragedy? Do they remember how many people died? Do they remember the stories from the neighbours watching on as their friends and families gasped for air from the outside windows?

    It will be nearly four years since the disaster that this legislation will be brought in, which is long enough. It won't stop fires but if enough landlords and private owners take action then perhaps we will be able to prevent or at least limit the effects of another Grenfell Tower.

    Houses and apartment blocks aren't going automatically burn down after February 2021 if they don't have the correct alarms in their houses. If they said we have until February 2025, would anyone do anything?

    People need to take responsibility for what they own.

  3. #3

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    Well, we have smoke alarms in the house that already work well and we have never had a fire in 35 years of living in this old house. The smoke alarms we have work well and do go off if anyone burns the toast. These new regs are OTT.

  4. #4
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    Grenfell became a major tragedy due mainly to the unsafe cladding which has still not been removed from many tower blocks even after all this time. There were other reasons, e.g. difficulty evacuating the building. A smoke alarm where the fire started would not have prevented all those deaths.
    If alarms were so important why take 3 1/2 years to change the law? Presumably most people had those leaflets (I did) and was pretty annoyed a) by the timing as it would be difficult to get professionals in by the deadline especially with Christmas intervening and b) by the cost quoted in the govt. website at a time when many people are struggling with normal bills and may have extra expense for Christmas. It quotes £220 for self installation; how many elderly and infirm could instal smoke and heat alarms in their ceilings? For safety reasons I don't even change a ceiling light bulb these days! I have two smoke alarms but no heat alarm in the kitchen (both smoke alarms are nearby and were approved by a fire officer years ago).
    Usual lack of sensible thought by those in charge who can well afford all this.
    The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.


  5. #5

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    Totally agree with all you say and there are loads of complaints online about it and particularly that there has been virtually no communication about it until folk received this poster through the letter box. Usual stupid diktat from on high!

  6. #6
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    I learned about this a couple of days ago when a leaflet was delivered in the post touting for business. The SNP are a disgrace bringing in legislation that they are not willing to support financially, and in many cases totally unnecessary in many private properties that already have smoke detectors. If people listen and carry this out there will be a lot of radioactive waste dumped with old smoke detectors put in bins (I know it is not allowed - it happens, just like used batteries) that were perfectly adequate to warn if there was a fire - to be replaced with wireless smoke detectors and heat detectors (in the kitchen).

    At an estimated cost of £220 per property (unless it is commercially installed when it will be a lot more).

    With an estimated 2.58 million properties in Scotland this is theoretically going to cost the people of Scotland £567,600,000 or well over half a £billion

    Someone in the SNP obviously has shares in this market. They are a load of twats.

  7. #7

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    Implementation of this has now been delayed for 2 years- but we are still all going to have to do it eventually. Supposing someone can't afford the estimated cost of over £200- is the Scottish Government going to pay?

  8. #8
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    Another case of folk expectingt the government to replace their own common sense? If folk can afford a TV and an iphone, they can certainly afford smoke alarms.

  9. #9

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    I already have good smoke alarms- they ain't broke and they don't need fixing. They go off if anyone so much as burns the toast. What I don't have is an integrated system that I need to employ an electrician to install and I resent having to pay for it at Government diktat. I'm surprised at you, orkneycadian! My goodness, here is something brought in by the SNP government that you evidently approve of and applaud. As far as I know, people in the other parts of the UK are not being forced to do this, only those in Scotland.

  10. #10
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    Fulmar - I agree with you, although most properties would be able to use self-installed alarms - they do cost double, or more, the cost of a non-wireless alarm system. What is so stupid is trying to bring in major changes to household legislation and not telling anyone. If it had been brought in with a 3-5 year implementation period allowing for existing smoke detectors to be replaced when they reached end-of-life so that we did not end up with perfectly reliable smoke detectors ending up in landfill (I know they are supposed to be recycled) then it would not be such poor legislation.

    They could have started with legislation that requires all properties to have smoke / Carbon Monoxide alarms (where appropriate) and where properties do not have alarms then wireless systems need to be used. With all replaced smoke / heat detectors replaced at end of life (of the equipment) with newer technology using wireless connectivity.

    I have had smoke detectors in all the properties I have lived in for over 40 years - so I am not against legislation requiring them - just not a badly thought out legislation, that is unenforceable unless we also bring in all properties being inspected annually.

    If the Scottish Parliament think it is so important then an ongoing publicity campaign involving educating people to the need for fire alarms / safety equipment in homes would be beneficial - and that the equipment needs to be regularly checked and replaced when it reached end of life for the equipment.

  11. #11
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    Yes, Fulmar, I am totally with you on this one. You do not need electrician installed complexity, when modern cordless technology will suffice. I applaud the SNP led government in this initiative, and would encourage all Scots not to just meet the minimum standard, bit to think carefully about what their fire plans involve. I would encourage all to think about escape plans, extinguishers, escape ladders fire first and higher floor buildings, and to prioritise these things above consumer luxuries and electronics

  12. #12
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    I'm not sure if i live outside the loop, but this thread is the first I have heard of the new regulations and I actually sell smoke alarms.

  13. #13
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    If you live in rented property your landlord by law is required to fit them, whether hardwired or signal linked, if you own your property and don't install your insurance will be nullified.
    As for a completion date this has been put on hold due to the Corona virus.
    This is not an expensive installation but will be one of life's necessities so start saving if you own your property,
    please don't expect us the tax payers to pay for your own private fitting.
    Last edited by gaza; 23-Nov-20 at 22:36.

  14. #14

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    We are not expecting anyone to pay for it but as said above, we have a perfectly good system of fire alarms already in our house that work well and no government or home insurer has ever questioned their suitability or efficacy. In fact, we originally took advantage of a free visit by local fire brigade officer who advised us where to site our smoke alarms! So why now? We don't live in a flat in high tower block covered in inflammable cladding and it is because of the disaster at Grenfell tower that these measures are being introduced. It should be a matter of choice whether a new system is installed and not be forced upon you.
    Last edited by Fulmar; 24-Nov-20 at 14:38.

  15. #15
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    New Fire Alarms delayed by two years at Scottish Parliament.

    Members' Business: Interlinked Fire and Smoke Alarm Systems
    December 16, 2020 16:59
    Duration: 47 minutes 29 seconds
    That the Parliament notes the Scottish Government requirement on all homeowners in Lothian and across Scotland to install an interlinked fire and smoke alarm system alongside carbon monoxide protection; notes the view that there needs to be a substantial delay of two years to the requirement being implemented as a result of the impact of COVID-19 and the reported lack of public awareness and understanding since it was first announced in February 2018; further notes concerns that there is a need for a high-profile public awareness campaign to improve understanding of what homeowners need to do to and where they can seek further information and support; acknowledges calls for a significant package of financial support for people who cannot afford to meet the requirements and there is a need for advice on the costs of buying and fitting an interlinked system so that consumers have a more realistic price guide to enable them whether to install the alarms themselves or to hire a tradesperson, and notes the calls for the provision of clearer guidance on approved devices and where they can be bought.

    See the debate at
    https://www.scottishparliament.tv/me...cember-16-2020

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