Alarm voiced as council to pay for carbon monoxide sirens

Published 26/11/2016 | 00:00

Wexford COUNTY COUNCIL plans to pay for social housing residents' carbon monoxide alarms.

Cllr Barbara Anne Murphy brought a motion calling for the council to supply all its housing stock with the alarms as a matter of urgency.

Cllr Murphy said: 'As many people know carbon monoxide is a silent killer. It is colourless, odourless and poisonous. Oil, gas and coal releases can cause it.'

Cllr Martin Murphy asked: 'Who is paying for all of the carbon monoxide alarms. Everyone else has to buy one for their own house. It's nice to say but there's a big cost involved to cover all our houses across the county. A certain group of people accept everything for nothing.

'It's fairly serious but perhaps they should pay for it.'

Cllr Murphy suggested that social housing tenants could be advised of the importance of having an alarm.

Cllr Larry O'Brien said he did not have a problem with Cllr Murphy's proposal so long as the money does not come from the housing budget.

He said: 'If it's going to cost €120,000 to do this and that could be put into repairs of house that need it.'

Cllr Deirdre Wadding said: 'What about the cost of people losing their lives.'

Cllr Michael Sheehan said landlords are responsible for their properties and they should pay.

'We have 4,000 social houses,' he added.

Cllr Barbara Anne Murphy said: 'If one person dies what do we do? It comes back on us we are the landlords.'

Director of Services for Housing, Environment and Emergency Services John Carley said: 'The council has decided as a matter of policy that we will implement a programme for all of the houses.'

CEO Tom Enright said the chief fire officer Paul LeStrange should be asked who the people at most risk of death in a fire are.

Mr Enright said during his three years in the county three elderly people living on their own have died in fires.

'That is a particular group that is at risk,' he said.

Cllr Lisa McDonald said the design of the stove burners needs to be looked at.

'Gases are getting trapped in the shoot and this brings them back into the room,' Cllr McDonald said.

A suggestion was made by Cllr O'Brien that departmental funding should be sought to meet the costs of the alarms.

Wexford People

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