To: All Heads of Fire Departments
From: Stephen D. Coan, State Fire Marshal
Date: November 9, 2005
Re: Highlights of S.2152 "Nicole's Bill"

On Friday, November 4, 2005, Governor Romney signed S. 2152 "Nicole's Bill" into law.

The law requires that every dwelling, building or structure including those owned by the Commonwealth, occupied in whole or in part for residential purposes and that (1) contains fossil fuel burning equipment or (2) incorporates closed parking within its structure, be equipped by the owner with approved carbon monoxide alarms in conformance with the requirements of the Board of Fire Prevention Regulations.

Some highlights of the law include:

  • Landlords must inspect, maintain, and replace, if necessary, required CO alarms at the beginning of any rental period.
  • The Department of Public Health is required to adopt and enforce this requirement on landlords as part of the State Sanitary code.
  • Every affected residential dwelling, building or structure shall be inspected by the fire department upon sale or transfer.
  • Fees for separate or joint inspecting of CO alarms and smoke detectors are $50.00 for single-family homes or units (i.e. condo), $100.00 for 2-family dwellings, $150.00 for 3-6 unit dwellings and $500.00 for 6 or more unit buildings.
  • The effective date of compliance is January 1, 2007, for all hardwired occupancies and March 31, 2006, for all non-hardwired occupancies.

The BFPR is currently drafting regulations which will outline what occupancies need which type units. This will affect the above compliance dates, and DFS will post the Board's regulations on its website to assist fire departments.

In the near future, DFS will form an implementation group to work with the BFPR on the implementation of the regulations and from a public education standpoint will work to facilitate public education initiatives and training for the fire service on aspects for implementation of the law.