New Carbon Monoxide Detector Law in Full Effect
Did you know that as of 2015 that all homes in Ontario that have fuel-burning appliances or that have an attached garage, are required to have carbon monoxide detectors adjacent to all sleeping areas?
This past Wednesday, Bill 77, also known as the Hawkins Gignac Act, was brought into full effect after a 6-month grace period had ended. The law was named in honour of OPP Constable Laurie Hawkins, who died from CO poisoning along with her husband and two children in their Woodstock home in 2008.
The law will now be enforced in single family homes and multi-family homes with no more than six separate units. Landlords are also responsible for installing CO detectors in apartment suites if a fuel-burning appliance or a fireplace is present.
CO is known as the silent killer because it is an invisible, tasteless, and odourless gas that can be deadly. CO is produced when fuels such as propane, gasoline, natural gas, heating oil or wood do not burn completely in fuel-burning appliances and devices such as furnaces, gas or wood fireplaces, hot water heaters, stoves, barbeques, portable fuel-burning heaters and generators and vehicles.
Roughly 80% of poisoning deaths and injuries from carbon monoxide occur in the home and each year thousands of people in Ontario require medical attention after being exposed to CO.
The symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are similar to flu-like symptoms, which are dizziness, fatigue, and an achey feeling. If your detector does go off, leave all of the windows shut, exit the building, and call 911. The reason that you leave the windows shut is because fire suppression staff will better be able to sense where the actual leak is coming from.
Regularly servicing your fuel-burning appliances and making sure that your outside vents are not blocked are the best ways to prevent carbon monoxide inside your home.
Homeowners found to not be complying with the law face a $295 ticket.
For more information about how to protect you and your loved ones, or if you would like one of our expert service technicians to service your fuel-burning appliances, or install an up-to-date smoke and carbon monoxide system, call our number today!