Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act of 2010


The California Building Officials (CALBO) has compiled the following information for its members on the new carbon monoxide (CO) device mandates.  Information on the installation timeline, certified CO device list, important details of the legislation, and community outreach options for local Building Departments are included below.  Click here for CALBO’s community outreach material.

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that carbon monoxide kills approximately 500 people each year and injures another 20,000 people nationwide.  In an effort to prevent these accidental deaths and injuries, the California legislature enacted SB 183 (Lowenthal) which mandates owners of dwelling intended for human occupancy to install carbon monoxide devices in existing dwelling units having a fossil fuel burning heater or appliance, fireplace, or attached garage.

CO devices must be installed in all single-family dwellings by July 1, 2011.  All other dwelling units must have CO devices installed by January 1, 2013.

The Office of the State Fire Marshal (SFM) has developed a list of certified CO devices that meet the requirement specified within the Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act of 2010.  For a complete list of currently approved devices please visit the SFM’s website at http://osfm.fire.ca.gov/licensinglistings/licenselisting_bml_searchcotest.php.  Under the search categories provided select Carbon Monoxide Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Detectors for a complete list of devices.


Further details contained in the Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act of 2010:

  • Owners shall install CO devices in a manner consistent with building standards applicable to new construction for the relevant type of occupancy if it is technically feasible.  See the 2010 California Building Code, Section 420.4, and the 2010 California Residential Code, Section R315.
  • CO devices shall produce a distinct audible alarm.
  • CO devices may be combined with a smoke detector, if the combination device meets all specified SFM listing and approval requirements.
  • Violation of Health & Safety Code Section 17926 is an infraction punishable by a maximum fine of two-hundred dollars for each offense.
  • A local enforcement agency shall provide the property owner a 30-day notice to correct.
  • Local jurisdictions are authorized to adopt ordinances requiring CO devices if the ordinance is consistent with the requirement of this bill.

  • For a full list of this legislations stipulations please review the Department of Housing and Community Development’s Information Bulletin 2011-01 at http://www.hcd.ca.gov/codes/shl/infobulls/IB2011-01.pdf.

    One of the main questions from Building Departments throughout California is, “How do we inform our community about the new CO device law?”  CALBO has created a community outreach brochure and a sample press release that each Building Department can use to spread the word throughout their communities.  Information about the new law can be included with city or county utility bills and/or distributed at local home improvement stores.  Encouraging local news agencies and newspapers to include information about the big change will also help keep your citizens informed.  For CALBO’s community outreach materials, visit our website at http://www.calbo.org/build_dept/resources/carbonmonoxidedevices.aspx.