Provides that batteries in battery operated single station smoke detecting alarm devices shall be non-replaceable, non-removable and capable of powering the devices for a minimum of ten years.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the general business law, in relation to certain smoke detecting devices
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: This legislation provides that battery operated smoke detectors within homes have batteries that are non-replaceable, non-removable and will power the device for a minimum of ten years.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section 1 adds a new section 399-ccc sub-section 1 that makes it unlawful for any person to distribute, sell, offer for sale, install or import any smoke detecting device, which is battery operated and is not powered by a battery that is non-replaceable, non-removable and capable of powering the device for a minimum of ten years.
Sub-section 2 requires that the product packaging include the manufacturer's name or registered trade-mark and model number and state that the battery has a minimum life of 10 years.
Sub-section 3 provision of this section shall not apply to smoke detecting devices install prior to the effective date.
Section 2 is the effective date.
JUSTIFICATION: New York State first required smoke alarms in homes in 1961 and as a result fire deaths have since been cut in half. Smoke alarms that are properly installed and maintained play a vital role in reducing fire deaths and injuries. Yet the data clearly shows that most fire deaths today happen in homes with no smoke alarms or no working alarms.
Rending a smoke alarm inoperable by tampering with the alarm, removing its batteries or failing to change its batteries is the next great concern with preventable fire deaths. In the Consumer Products Safety Commission's National Smoke Detector Project, 32% of consumers disable their smoke alarm when they experienced unwanted alarm activation from such sources as cooking, steam, cigarettes, dust or low battery chirps.
Long life, tamper resistant smoke alarms go to the core of addressing disablement and failed maintenance by consumers, and do so in a cost effective way. In recent years advancements have led to smoke alarms that today prevent consumer tampering and that can power the alarm for a minimum of ten years, As these alarms have become more available and affordable, requiring the replacement of existing battery operated smoke alarms with this more maintenance-free alarms will drive down fire deaths and injuries.
Ten year smoke detectors are powered by Lithium batteries. They cost on average $18-$20 and are available from all three major manufacturers of smoke alarms in New York State. This bill would rectify the largest contributing factor of preventable home fire deaths; Dead or missing batteries.
On average, a standard battery powered smoke alarm costs $12 while a ten-year battery alarm costs $18-20. However, with the cost of replacement batteries needed (a $3.00 battery twice a year) over the course of 10 years the cost becomes $72. The ten year smoke alarm pays for itself in 2 years because there are no batteries that need to be replaced and since it is recommended that all smoke alarms be replaced after ten years, consumers who purchase ten year smoke alarms will actually save considerable money.
Currently 5 states, and several municipalities require ten year batteries in smoke detectors; California, Maryland, Louisiana, Michigan, North Carolina, Philadelphia, PA, Milwaukee and Madison, WI.
According to data collected from the National Fire Protection Association, in one-quarter (24%) of the home fire deaths, smoke alarms were present but did not sound. In reported home fires in which the smoke alarms were present but did not operate, 73% of the smoke alarms had missing, disconnected or dead batteries.
The National Association of State Fire Marshals even recently even amended their Smoke Alarm Guidance Document advising that battery-operated smoke alarms be powered by 10-year batteries.
Much like the original legislation requiring smoke alarms in homes in New York, this legislation is meant to save lives by addressing preventable fire deaths. Fire officials across the country agree that in too many of the house fires where fatalities occur, they find smoke alarms that don't work because of dead or missing batteries. Providing a smoke alarm that cannot be tampered with and will last for ten years is the next step in stopping preventable fire death.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2011/2012: A10631-A, amended and recommitted to governmental operations, print number 10631-A
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on January 1, 2016, provided however, that effective immediately, all actions and procedures with respect to the proposed adoption, amendment, suspension and repeal of any rule or regulation for timely implementation of this act are directed and authorized.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 4054--A 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE March 6, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. NOZZOLIO -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Consumer Protection -- recommitted to the Committee on Consumer Protection in accordance with Senate Rule 6, sec. 8 -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee AN ACT to amend the general business law, in relation to certain smoke detecting devices THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The general business law is amended by adding a new section 399-ccc to read as follows: S 399-CCC. SMOKE DETECTING DEVICES. 1. IT SHALL BE UNLAWFUL FOR ANY PERSON TO DISTRIBUTE, SELL, OFFER FOR SALE, INSTALL OR IMPORT ANY SMOKE DETECTING DEVICE, WHICH IS SOLELY BATTERY OPERATED AND IS NOT POWERED BY A BATTERY THAT IS NON-REPLACEABLE, NON-REMOVABLE AND CAPABLE OF POWERING SUCH DEVICE FOR A MINIMUM OF TEN YEARS. 2. ALL PRODUCT PACKAGING CONTAINING A SOLELY BATTERY OPERATED SMOKE DETECTING DEVICE SHALL INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION: (A) THE MANUFACTURER'S NAME OR REGISTERED TRADEMARK AND THE MODEL NUMBER OF THE SMOKE DETECTING DEVICE; AND (B) A MINIMUM BATTERY LIFE OF TEN YEARS. 3. THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION SHALL NOT APPLY TO SOLELY BATTERY OPERATED SMOKE DETECTING DEVICES INSTALLED PRIOR TO THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS SECTION WHICH ARE REMOVED OR RELOCATED TO ANOTHER ROOM OR AREA OF THE SAME BUILDING AFTER THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS SECTION; TO SOLELY BATTERY OPERATED SMOKE DETECTING DEVICES WHICH HAVE BEEN ORDERED BY, OR ARE IN THE INVENTORY OF, OWNERS, MANAGING AGENTS, CONTRACTORS, WHOLE- SALERS OR RETAILERS ON OR BEFORE THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS SECTION; TO SMOKE DETECTING DEVICES WHICH RECEIVE THEIR POWER FROM THE ELECTRICAL SYSTEM OF THE BUILDING, FIRE ALARM SYSTEMS WITH SMOKE DETECTORS, FIREEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD01778-05-4 S. 4054--A 2
ALARM DEVICES THAT CONNECT TO A PANEL, OR OTHER DEVICES THAT USE A LOW- POWER RADIO FREQUENCY WIRELESS COMMUNICATION SIGNAL. S 2. This act shall take effect January 1, 2016; provided however, that effective immediately, all actions and procedures with respect to the proposed adoption, amendment, suspension or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary for the timely implementation of this act are directed and authorized to be made and completed on or before such effective date.