Southern Brooklyn

New Law Requiring Replacement Of Carbon Monoxide Alarms Goes Into Effect Today

This CO detector saved its owner's life according to the Flickr page (Source: windsordi/Flickr)

Just one day after news broke that five people died from suspected carbon monoxide poisoning in a home in the suburbs of Washington D.C., a new New York City law goes into effect requiring residential property owners to replace their carbon monoxide detectors.

Local Law 75 passed the City Council in December, requiring  owners of Class A buildings – including single-family homes, apartments and condominiums – must replace their carbon monoxide (CO) alarms when they reach the end of the manufacturer’s suggest useful life – an average of five to seven years.

It expands on Local Law 7, passed in 2004, which made installation of the alarms a requirement for all dwellings with fossil-fuel buringin equipment. As many as two million property owners who installed them in 2004 will likely need to replace them now.

Carbon monoxide poisoning is responsible for 450 deaths a year, in addition to tens of thousands of emergency room visits, according to First Alert, a producer of smoke and CO detectors. The symptoms of CO poisoning, known as the silent killer, include nausea, headaches, dizziness, weakness, chest pain and vomiting.

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  1. “Carbon monoxide poisoning is responsible for 450 deaths a year” I’m pretty sure that’s across whole country and even if it’s not it’s still low number.
    I stand by words. This law is on books to create a market that otherwise would not exist.

  2. That’s 450 people that would still be alive if detectors were present.

    There are many laws, that, in themselves seem to address a small problem. Accumulatively, all the various laws combined save significant numbers of lives.

  3. I agree with Faba (good gosh wha’ts this world coming to). At what point does the economy collapse because we’re guarding every person against every possible permutation of every possible accident that can occur.

       I know one can say we should do all we can to prevent deaths, but let’s face it, there are practical limits. If we spent our whole GDP on safety, there wouldn’t be a country left to protect.

  4. I live in the UK and I lost my daughter to carbon monoxide poisoning – just two months after she got married. For goodness sake – one life is important. If you do a google alert for carbon monoxide poisoning – you will see how many serious incidents occur in the US. Many deaths connected with CO are unrecorded because the symptoms are so similar to flu. An audible CO alarm saves lives – as do smoke alarms.

  5. Sorry for your loss.
    Unfortunately, we are a proud “Let’em die!” community.   That is, except for terminally ill patients, who should NOT be allowed to end their lives.  Go figure…

  6. As another poster pointed out, carbon monoxide poisoning is a silent killer. Many deaths and illnesses that are caused by exposure are misdiagnosed.

    Far as I know we spend a fraction of our GDP on administrating laws which protect us in many cases almost invisibly. Perhaps you believe that shielded wires are unnecessary as well. Would you like to repeal the Pure Food And Drug Act? Heaven knows how much that adds to the cost of food. Much better to give manufacturers a more healthy profit, that’s far healthier for America.

    We live in a society that seeks little more than immediate gratification and little personal sacrifice. Like children that want things that carry risk of danger many of us simply don’t care any more. Such a unsafe place for us to be right now. And I suppose matters will get far worse before they get any better.

  7. Thank you! Unfortunately few people understand that safety is paramount. And I am afraid that even personal experience would not have a permanent impact on many people, who have very talented at living for today, not thinking about yesterday or concerning themselves with tomorrow.

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