Carbon monoxide detectors needed in 200,000 homes

Carbon monoxide detector (photo is illustrative).
Carbon monoxide detector (photo is illustrative). Source: Rescue Board (Päästeamet)

Approximately 200,000 homes in Estonia should have carbon monoxide detectors installed data from the latest census shows, Postimees writes.

From 2022 it will be mandatory to install a carbon monoxide detector in a dwelling which has a stove or fireplace, and has already been the case for gas heating since 2018.

Last week it was reported by ERR News that the government had approved a law change making carbon monoxide detectors mandatory in dwellings to reduce carbon monoxide poisoning and deaths caused by heating systems.

With the change in the law an obligation to register heating systems will also be created which will provide the Rescue Board with a comprehensive overview of heating systems and their condition.

The data will speed up the issuing of permits for construction or the use of a detached house, auxiliary building, a cottage or a garden house by local authorities. There is currently insufficient information on heating systems in the building register.

Carbon monoxide detectors are significantly more expensive than smoke detectors and cost between €20 and €60. But the Rescue Board says nothing else can detect carbon monoxide, which means that the detectors will have to be fitted on the wall even if the budget has to be tightened considerably.

"We plan to do the same with carbon monoxide detectors as we have with smoke detectors, which means that we will work with local governments to help those who have trouble purchasing a detector," said Sandra Tammiksaar, expert at the prevention department of the Rescue Board.

"A good example is the city of Tartu, which purchased carbon monoxide detectors that the Rescue Board has already been installing," she added.

Indrek Ints, head of the prevention department of the Rescue Board, said that during home visits, the Rescue Board receives an overview of how many carbon monoxide detectors are needed. Carbon monoxide detectors installed during home visits are paid for by the Rescue Board and people will be free of concern for approximately 10 years with those detectors.

Employees of the Rescue Board not only deliver the detectors to people's homes, but also install them in the right place. Ints was unable to say how many of the 200,000 homes will receive a carbon monoxide detector as a gift as this will be determined during the visits. The Rescue Board visits over 22,000 homes a year.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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