New fire alarms are to be installed in every north-east home following new legislation.
Rules aimed at reducing the number of household fires were officially introduced yesterday, which will see all houses upgraded to new smoke, heat and carbon monoxide alarms.
Under the scheme, every property in Scotland must have a smoke alarm fitted in the living room and in circulation spaces such as hallways and landings. Kitchens are to have a heat alarm, and there must also be a carbon monoxide alarm where there are fixed combustion appliances.
It comes after safety was reviewed in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy in June 2017.
There will now be a period of two years in which the alarms have to be installed.
Housing Minister MSP Kevin Stewart, who represents the Aberdeen Central area, said: “We are committed to achieving improved fire safety in homes across Scotland and we are clear that one death from residential fires is one too many.
“These new regulations ensure that everyone will benefit from the same high level of protection – whether they own their home or rent from a social or private landlord.”
Leonora Montgomery, who has been a resident of Thistle Court on Rose Street for the past 43 years, is part of the regional tenants’ network, which has consulted widely with the Scottish Government.
She is also chairwoman of the city-wide multi-storey group and said that she has never felt worried about fire safety in the building, but welcomed the new rules.
Fellow Thistle Court resident John McMann added: “I feel safe in this building.”
Bruce Farquharson, local senior officer at the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, said: “We work extremely closely, not just with Aberdeen City Council but with councils across Scotland to do inspections and to carry out home safety checks. The number of casualties and fire-related deaths has gone down 60%, fires in homes has roughly halved over the past 20 years.”
New alarms are estimated to cost around £200.
A spokesman for Aberdeenshire Council said: “Aberdeenshire Council welcomes any initiative that saves lives and keeps our council tenants safe. While our council houses have safety measures already in place, there is additional work required to comply with this initiative.
“We are currently in the process of assessing the cost and delivery implications to ensure full compliance is achieved as soon as possible.”
An Aberdeen City Council spokeswoman said: “We welcome this announcement and we already have programmes in place for these measures, where they are not already fitted in our properties.
“The health and safety of our tenants is a high priority and we will of course ensure the new standards are adhered to.”