Every year around 70 deaths and 350,000 injuries in UK homes are caused by faulty electrics and electrical equipment. Almost half of all domestic fires are caused by electricity. And if you live in a privately rented property, statistics show that you are at a higher risk of electric shock.
With regard to fire safety your landlord must:
- Follow safety regulations
- Provide a smoke alarm on each storey and a carbon monoxide alarm in any room with a solid fuel burning appliance (for example, a coal fire or a wood burning stove),
- Check you have clear access to escape routes at all times
- Make sure the furniture and furnishings they supply are fire safe
- Provide fire alarms and extinguishers if the property is a large house of multiple occupation (HMO)
With regard to gas safety, your landlord must:
- Make sure the gas equipment they supply is safely installed and maintained by a gas safe registered engineer
- Have a registered engineer do an annual gas safety check on each appliance and flue
- Provide a copy of the gas safety check record before you move in, or within 28 days of the check
With regard to electrical safety, your landlord must:
- Make sure the electrical system is safe, for example sockets and light fittings
- All appliances they supply are safe, for example cookers and kettles, etc
You as the tenant also have responsibilities. You are obliged to report electrical problems as soon as they appear, as well as maintain any electrical items you bring into the house. If you have reported a problem to your landlord and they have refused to put the situation right or ignored your request, you should then contact your local authority who will be able to help you. Local authorities will ensure a landlord is meeting their legal obligations and can take enforcement action against them.
If you have bought any electrical products for use in your rented home, whether it is a large item (e.g., fridge or a television) or something smaller like a kettle or hairdryer, it is important to make sure that you register the appliance with the manufacturer. This means that if there is a problem and the item needs to be recalled they will be able to contact you.
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The information contained within this blog is provided solely for general informational and educational purposes and is not intended as a substitute for professional advice. Before taking any actions based upon this information, we advise the reader to consult any and all relevant statutory or regulatory guidance and where felt necessary to consult a qualified fire or industry regulation professional. The use or reliance on any information contained herein is solely at the reader’s risk.