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Carbon Monoxide - The "Silent" Killer

On February 1, 2011, Wisconsin carbon monoxide detector law went into effect, requiring all homes to have a carbon monoxide detector.

This new law expands the current carbon monoxide detector requirements to all one and two-family homes and parallels requirements for smoke alarms for ease of installation. This new law will require carbon monoxide alarms to be installed in the basement of the dwelling and on each floor level except the attic or storage area of both newly constructed and existing homes. For new construction, the alarms must be hard-wired in order to be current with national model safety codes. For existing homes, the alarms can be battery operated and can be multi purpose (smoke and carbon monoxide). Dwellings with no attached garages, no fireplaces and no fuel-burning fireplaces are exempted from this requirement.

Similar to the smoke alarm law, the new carbon monoxide detector law does not have a fine or penalty associated with non-compliance. However, all home inspections will be required to check for carbon monoxide alarms.  If a carbon monoxide incident happens in your home without the detector, your insurance may not cover the claim.  That’s a very unsettling thought, so be smart by being safe!
City of Milwaukee residents can call the Smoke Detector Hotline for more information.  The hotline number is 414-286-8980.

Carbon Monoxide (CO) is an odorless that can cause sudden illness and death. CO is found in flammable fumes, such as those produced in vehicles, small gasoline engines, lanterns, gas ranges, and heating systems; just to name a few. All people and animals are at risk of CO poisoning, but certain groups like infants and those with certain medical issues susceptible to the effects. To learn more about Carbon Monoxide (CO) poisoning, you can visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) website.