No carbon monoxide detector requirements in Glenwood " yet |

No carbon monoxide detector requirements in Glenwood " yet

Pete Fowler
Glenwood Springs correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS ” Glenwood Springs has no requirements regarding residential carbon monoxide detectors, but the city could adopt new rules this year.

The 2009 International Residential Code includes a change requiring carbon monoxide alarms in new homes with fuel-fired appliances and in existing homes “where interior alterations include fuel-fired appliance replacements or attached garages.”

Glenwood Springs doesn’t have to adopt the international code, but building official Pat Seydel said the building department could adopt the new code this year at its own discretion or at the direction of the City Council.

“We don’t know for sure that we’re going to adopt it,” he said. “It sounds like other jurisdictions are maybe waiting for 2012.”

He said carbon monoxide detectors are a good thing, but he said some people raise the question “should a government tell people on every safety issue, ‘You have to do this?'”

Mayor Bruce Christensen said carbon monoxide detector requirements haven’t come up at a City Council meeting recently.

“I think it would be wise to look into an ordinance,” he said of his personal opinion. “It does not seem any more intrusive than requiring smoke detectors.”

Carbon monoxide detector requirements received attention with the Nov. 28 deaths of four members of the Lofgren family who were staying at a home near Aspen. A disconnected boiler exhaust pipe apparently leaked the deadly gas into the home, causing the deaths.

A few weeks later a woman in an apartment near the University of Denver reportedly died from carbon monoxide poisoning.

Some state legislators are lobbying for passage of a law that would require carbon monoxide detectors in many homes and apartments. Aspen and Pitkin County have both strengthened carbon monoxide detector requirements since the Lofgren tragedy.

Garfield County commissioners John Martin and Tresi Houpt reached a stalemate last week on a carbon monoxide alarm requirement. Martin voted against a code change that would require detectors and Houpt voted for it. Outgoing Commissioner Larry McCown was absent and Commissioner Mike Samson was not yet sworn in. The matter could come up again this week.

The Centers for Disease Control estimates 500 people in the U.S. die each year of poisoning from the odorless gas.

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