State law requires CO alarms in most homes
November is Carbon Monoxide Awareness month and Cal Fire is reminding all residents of the importance of having a working carbon monoxide alarm. As of July 1, 2011, state law requires owners of single family homes with attached garages or fossil fuel sources for heating to install carbon monoxide alarms in every California home. In addition, all other dwelling units, like apartments, are required to have an alarm by Jan. 1, 2013.
“Carbon monoxide is a silent killer, each year claiming the lives of an average of 480 people and sending more than 20,000 people to emergency rooms across the nation,” said State Fire Marshal Tonya Hoover.
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless gas that is produced from heaters, fireplaces, furnaces and many types of appliances and cooking devices. The best way for homeowners to stay protected from CO is to have a carbon monoxide alarm installed on every floor and outside each sleeping area. A recent study found that nearly nine in 10 California households did not have a CO alarm. “Having a CO alarm is a small investment that really can help save your life and the lives of your family,” said Hoover.
California’s Carbon Monoxide Month is intended to help educate homeowners about the law and to encourage them to install a carbon monoxide alarm. Cal Fire/Office of the State Fire Marshal is teaming up with fire departments across the state, as well as other State agencies to spread the word about the dangers of CO and how to keep your family and friends safe.
As the cooler weather moves into California and the use of fossil fuel heating increases, now is the time to be aware of the dangers of CO and how you can prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. For more information fire.ca.gov or visit the Website for the California Department of Public Health at cdph.ca.gov.