Nov 8, 2012 9:26 PM by Eric Ross

Are renters or landlords responsible for inspecting smoke and carbon monoxide detectors?

COLORADO SPRINGS- As the temperatures drop, many residents will begin turning up the heat and kicking on their furnaces.

However, that can be dangerous, even deadly if they aren't working properly.

One person died in a Colorado Springs apartment last month from a carbon monoxide leak after the detector reportedly never sounded an alarm.

Colorado law requires all rental properties and apartments to have working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

"This is what's going to be your line of defense when you're asleep and there's carbon monoxide or a fire," said Laura Russmann with the Apartment Association of Southern Colorado.

Sadly, the detector didn't save resident Benedo Valdez, 50, who passed away Oct. 7 after a furnace pumped the toxic fumes into his apartment.

Firefighters said the detector wasn't on because it was not plugged in properly.

"Please check your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors," Stacy Billapando with the Colorado Springs Fire Department said. "It's that season."

For those who are renting, it's important to take note of who's responsible for making sure your furnaces and detectors are working properly.

"When you sign a lease, they'll make sure you have a battery and that it's operating and making sure everything is operating fine," Russmann said.

But there's a catch once you're handed the keys.

"Once the lease is signed and the resident moves in, it becomes the responsibility of the resident to make sure that if anything malfunctions with that unit, whether it's a smoke detector or carbon monoxide detector, that they contact their landlord to make sure that gets fixed," Russmann said.

The responsibility then shifts back over to the property manager.

However, battery replacements for detectors may not be covered.

All maintenance repairs should be given to the property manager or landlord in writing.

Smoke detectors are recommended in every room of your apartment or home, while carbon monoxide detectors are recommended on every floor.



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