Don't Let Your Property
Go Up in Smoke!
Smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors belong in every dwelling. Yet people still perish because their apartment or condo building are either not equipped with these necessary alarms or they neglect to check to make sure they're operational.
Under Massachusetts law, smoke detectors can either be powered by battery or hardwired with a back-up battery. However, use of battery operated smoke detectors are allowed only in units built prior to 1975 that have not had major renovations. All stairwells, basements, bedrooms, and common areas need to be protected by a smoke detector, but for detailed information see this document from the Boston Fire Department.
With regards to carbon monoxide detectors, the Massachusetts Fire Prevention Code states that "every dwelling, building or structure occupied in whole or in part for residential purposes, that: (1) contains fossil-fuel burning equipment (gas or oil) or (2) incorporates enclosed parking within its structure," must be equipped with these devices. The owner, landlord or superintendent is responsible for equipping their property with working carbon monoxide alarms. For further information on these requirements, see this document from the Boston Fire Department.
Buildings in Boston must have a smoke and carbon monoxide alarm inspection when involved in any real estate transaction. You may find details about this process by visiting the official city of Boston page. The inspection verifies that both types of detectors are functioning and have been installed in accordance with Massachusetts General Law Chapter 148.