Carbon monoxide detectors save lives. Why aren't they required everywhere?

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Thousands are poisoned by carbon monoxide each year. But the use of CO detectors and alarms is largely optional.

Currently, there are no federal laws requiring CO alarms in buildings. Local laws regarding CO alarms and detectors vary across counties and cities and towns. There are exceptions to the regulations as well. Some require them in new buildings but not in existing ones. Some require them in sleeping spaces while other requirements apply only to buildings with a fuel-burning source.

The most recent federal law, Nicholas and Zachary Burt Memorial Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act of 2021, signed by the president, encourages states to adopt tougher standards but does not require the use of CO detectors. It authorizes the Consumer Protection Safety Commission to provide resources to states and encourages the use of alarms. It also establishes a grant program to help states sponsor awareness programs.

But Congress was able to require one federal agency to mandate CO alarms. Following multiple carbon monoxide poisoning deaths, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development set a deadline of December 27th to have carbon monoxide alarms installed in 3 million of its units nationwide. at schools and day care centersIn October, 8 people were taken to a hospital after falling ill at a Kansas City, Missouri, elementary school due to a carbon monoxide leak.

"It would be completely preventable if we would, like, put detection in indoor spaces, but we don't," Ashley Wilson said.

 

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Its not the job of the government to protect us from ourselves.

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