The Maryland carbon monoxide law is defined by House Bill 401. According to this law, a carbon monoxide detector must be installed in a central location outside of each sleeping area within a dwelling.

The word dwelling is defined to mean “ a building or part of a building that provides living or sleeping facilities for one or more individuals.” The word dwelling refers to a one- or two- family dwelling, multi-family dwelling, hotel, motel, or dormitory.

The law states that if there is a centralized system that is capable of emitting a distinct and audible sound to warn all occupants, the owner of a multi-family dwelling may install a carbon monoxide alarm within 25 feet of any carbon monoxide-producing equipment.

The law only applies to a dwelling that relies on the combustion of fossil fuel for heat, ventilation, or hot water or clothes dryer operation. The law only applies to a newly constructed dwelling whose building permit was issued on or after January 1, 2008.

The Maryland carbon monoxide law also includes Senate Bill 173, Chapter 38. In new public schools and those that are to be substantially remodeled, a carbon monoxide alarm is to be installed where fuel-burning appliances are present, according to this law. If the alarm goes off, emergency personnel should be notified.

We must ask why they limited this to schools that are being remodeled? The need for CO detectors is greatest in an old school, especially before a major reconstruction.

The carbon monoxide detectors should be installed in accordance with the National Fire Protection Association 720: Standard for the Installation of Carbon Monoxide (CO) Detection and Warning Equipment, the 2009 edition, or as referenced in the state fire prevention code. In this code, CO signals must be distinct from other signals, for example. The standard for CO alarms in dwellings also must be in accordance with the NFPA 720 standard. Installing a carbon monoxide detector also means that one must follow the manufacturer’s instructions.


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