Shocking new data has discovered 15.2 per cent of Melbourne homes do not have smoke alarms.
The research, conducted by the Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB) and obtained by Smoke Alarm Solutions, discovered the city’s firefighters responded to 1,719 structural fires in residential properties between April 2017 and March 2018.
Smoke Alarm information was collected at 1,510 of the fires, with data revealing smoke alarms were present only 84.8 per cent of the time.
When compared to other states and territories, Melbourne behind the Australian Capital Territory (92 per cent1) and Queensland (85 per cent2) when it comes to operational smoke alarms, but ahead of South Australia (76 per cent3) and New South Wales (75 per cent4)
Smoke Alarm Solutions CEO Cameron Davis said the MFB research proves many Melbournians are ignoring the dangers associated with house fires.
“Working smoke alarms should be in every home,” Mr Davis said.
“I’m stunned 15.2 per cent of Melbournians would rather gamble with their safety and the lives of family and friends.
“Nobody thinks it’ll happen to them, but there will be at least 143 house fires in Melbourne this month.
“Families and landlords have a responsibility to ensure their properties are safe and there is no better investment than an up-to-date and working smoke alarm.”
Victorian law states smoke alarms (complying with Australian standards AS 3786) must be installed in all homes, units, flats and townhouses. It is the legal responsibility of all owners and landlords to install working smoke alarms.
Residential homes constructed before 1 August 1997 need only 9-volt battery powered smoke alarms installed.
Residential homes constructed after 1 August 1997 must have smoke alarms connected to 240-volt mains power. In addition, a backup battery must be installed in the smoke alarm.
The five most common causes of home fires in Australia are unattended / abandoned (when something has been left alone, usually cooking, electrical failure, falling asleep, overheating and mechanical failure.
Smoke Alarm Solutions is the largest provider of smoke alarm compliance and maintenance services to the Australian real estate industry.
The company provides a comprehensive risk-mitigation service throughout Victoria, which ensures landlords do adhere to their legislative responsibilities, property managers meet their duty of care requirements and tenants are safe from the dangers of fire.
Smoke Alarm Solutions has also been proactive in educating the sector via its informative investor and Property Manager new legislation breakfasts.
Smoke Alarm Solutions primary aim is to provide a cost-effective and user-friendly service that will reduce the liability and stress surrounding such an imperative and intricate set of guidelines involved with smoke alarm compliance.
1ACT Fire & Rescue
2Queensland Fire and Emergency Service
3SA Metropolitan Fire Service data
4Fire & Rescue New South Wales