Ruth Maguire MSP has today welcomed confirmation from the Scottish Government that they will ask the Scottish Parliament to delay new regulations on smoke and carbon monoxide alarms by 12 months due to the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Legislation which was due to come into effect in February 2021 meant that all homes in Scotland to have interlinked smoke and carbon monoxide alarms will be delayed for 12 months.

Due to the practical difficulties likely to be faced by homeowners seeking to make the necessary changes to their homes, the Scottish Government will now seek to move implementation back to February 2022.

The Scottish Government has already made over £15m of loan funding available for Social Landlords to procure and install the necessary alarms which should help ensure that social tenants are safe in their homes.

The Scottish Government has also provided additional funding of £870,000 in each year for the last two years to the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service to support their Home Safety Visits for vulnerable and high-risk people

The SNP MSP said: “Fire safety is an absolute priority for all of us, and these improved regulations will mean that everyone in North Ayrshire will benefit from the same level of protection, whether they own their home or rent from a social or private landlord.

“However, given the impact of Covid-19, and the difficulties this legislation was likely to cause for people seeking to install new alarms, it’s welcome that the Scottish Government has listened to concerns and decided to ask the Scottish Parliament to delay the deadline by 12 months.

“As MSP for Cunninghame South, I will continue to look closely at ensuring people have the support, information and advice they need to make changes in advance of the new standards coming into force in February 2022.”

Kevin Stewart, Minister for Local Government and Housing, said: “If this delay is approved, we will continue to work with partners to spread awareness of the changes before the new deadline. Our focus will be on supporting householders to ensure satisfactory fire alarms are installed so we can improve the safety of their homes.”