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Carbon Monoxide Alarms

Volume 616: debated on Tuesday 8 November 2016

8. What plans he has to make compliance with the BS EN 50291 safety standard mandatory for all carbon monoxide alarms that are placed on the market in the UK. (907122)

Carbon monoxide poisoning is a very serious issue. Detectors must be safe, but currently compliance with the standard is not mandatory. I will consider any evidence the hon. Gentleman has and discuss it with colleagues in the Department for Communities and Local Government, who are responsible for the construction products regulations.

I thank the Minister for that answer. I know that the Department takes a keen interest in this issue, which is a matter of concern to the whole nation. She will be aware that in November last year the BBC reported on the dangers of substandard carbon monoxide detectors being purchased online, and Which? magazine has recently highlighted the problem as well. Given the potential for loss of life, what extra measures can she take here and now to stop the purchase of substandard detectors in the UK?

I thank the hon. Gentleman for his question. I will definitely discuss the matters he raises further with the Department for Communities and Local Government. I am aware of the Which? inspection involving various tests, which found some equipment to be defective. However, last year the Government brought forward the smoke and carbon monoxide alarm regulations, covering private landlords; at least private tenants now have the absolute protection of carbon monoxide alarms being in every room used as living accommodation where solid fuel is used.