SINGAPORE: Looking to further strengthen the safety standards of private residential properties, the Singapore government will make it mandatory for all newly built homes to have smoke detectors installed. The move is expected to become effective from June 2018 following the release of an updated Fire Code.
The move comes amid rising number of home fire incidents in Singapore. According to a report, homes accounted for about two-thirds of total fire incidents reported in Singapore last year. In Singapore, smoke detectors are currently mandatory only for certain industrial, commercial, and mixed-use buildings.
The cost of purchasing and installing a smoke alarm will have to be borne by the homeowner. A basic smoke alarm can be purchased for about S$60, while installation costs come to about S$50. Number of smoke detectors required to be installed will depend on the size of the home. While single-storey homes will need only one smoke alarm in the living room, multi-storey homes will require a separate smoke alarm for each floor. Additionally, homeowners making renovations to enhance fire safety standards will also have to install such alarms. More than 50,000 HDB rental flats will have such systems installed for free by 2021, sources said.
A report also cited Josephine Teo, Second Minister for Home Affairs, as saying that the Fire Code is being updated keeping in mind the ageing population of Singapore. According to a report, one out of every four Singaporeans will be above 65 years old by 2030.