Smoke Alarm Upgrades – Legislation from 1 January 2022

July 26, 2021

On 1 January 2017 new smoke alarm legislation was introduced in Queensland. The legislation is being rolled out
in a staged approach over 10 years, with all dwellings to be compliant by 1 January 2027. The new legislation specifies the type, positioning and interconnectedness of smoke alarms, which are critical factors for an early warning and quick escape.

From 1 January 2022, landlords must install interconnected smoke alarms in residential rental properties. When one goes off, they all go off, giving everyone extra time to escape. All other dwellings must transition to full compliance by 2027.

» Smoke alarms in dwellings must:
i. be photoelectric (AS3786-2014); and
ii. not also contain an ionisation sensor; and
iii. be less than 10 years old; and
iv. operate when tested; and
v. be interconnected with every other smoke alarm in the dwelling so all activate together

» Smoke alarms must be installed on each storey:
i. in each bedroom; and
ii. in hallways that connect bedrooms and the rest of the dwelling; or
iii. if there is no hallway, between the bedrooms and other parts of the storey; or
iv. if there are no bedrooms on a storey at least one smoke alarm must be installed in the most likely path of travel to exit the dwelling

Smoke alarms must be hardwired or powered by a non-removable 10-year battery, or a combination of both may be allowed.

Where practicable smoke alarms must be placed on the ceiling. Smoke alarms must not be placed:
i) within 300mm of a corner of a ceiling and a wall;
ii) within 300mm of a light fitting;
iii) within 400mm of an air-conditioning vent;
iv) within 400mm of the blades of a ceiling fan.

There are special requirements for stairways, sloping ceilings, and ceilings with exposed beams. These requirements are explained in the Building Fire Safety Regulation 2008. Penalties may be imposed for non compliance with the law.

Find out more about the smoke alarm legislation changes here.

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