New rules being brought in to curb fire deaths will apply to all homes in Scotland from 2021, the Scottish Government has announced.
The regulations were brought forward in the wake of the Grenfell Tower blaze in London in 2017, with the tougher safety standards already applying to new build homes and private rented properties.
Under the regulations, all homes will have to have a smoke alarm in their main living room or lounge, with alarms also fitted in hallways and landings.
While the new standards will not become mandatory for other properties for another two years, Housing Minister Kevin Stewart has urged people to make the changes sooner.
Under the new regulations, a heat alarm must be installed in the kitchen, with carbon monoxide detectors also to be legally required if the building has a boiler, fire, or stove.
The alarms should also be ‘interlinked’, according to proposed regulations, so that they are all triggered if there is a fire.
Housing minister, Mr Stewart 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.”
He added: “Although the standards come into force in February 2021, we hope most people will recognise the additional safety benefits and take action sooner.”
Assistant Chief Officer David McGown, of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, said: “The presence of working smoke and heat detectors has been proven to significantly reduce casualties and fatalities occurring because of fires within the home.
“Scottish Fire and Rescue Service therefore welcomes any change that improves safety in the home for all residents, regardless of tenure.”