MEBANE, N.C., March 1, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- One year after New York's carbon monoxide (CO) alarm legislation – "Amanda's Law"-- went into effect, a new survey on behalf of Kidde, the leading manufacturer of fire and CO safety products, found that nearly half of New York families remain unaware of the law. Kidde is part of UTC Fire & Security, a unit of United Technologies Corporation (NYSE: UTX).
The survey, conducted in January by DecisionAnalyst, revealed that more than half (57%) of those who didn't purchase an alarm after the law went into effect said they either ran out of time or didn't believe they needed one. However, US Census data shows that nearly all (90.5%) of New York homes use some form of fossil-fuel burning heat source (gas, fuel oil, or kerosene), which can generate carbon monoxide. You can't see, taste or smell carbon monoxide, and the only safe way to detect it is with a working CO alarm.
Media reports show that between 2003 and 2010, more than 400 people in New York suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning, including at least 112 children, like Amanda Hansen, after whom New York's CO alarm law was named. The 16-year-old died of CO poisoning from a defective boiler while sleeping at a friend's house in January 2009. Ken Hansen, Amanda's father, urges homeowners: Don't Wait. Protect your family today.
"The pain of losing a child is the hardest thing a family could ever experience—especially when it could have been prevented," said Ken Hansen. "For just twenty dollars, you can get a CO alarm to help protect the ones you love."
While the survey revealed that many people took steps to protect families—an additional one-fifth of respondents purchased a CO alarm in 2010 than in 2009—the survey also indicated a need to remind homeowners that CO alarms should be replaced every five years. CO alarms monitor your home 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and are designed to provide accurate readings throughout the life of the alarm. However, like all other household appliances, CO alarms don't last forever.
In 2009, Underwriters Laboratories (UL), the independent third-party agency that tests CO alarms, began requiring an end-of-life warning to alert homeowners when their CO alarm has reached the end of its useful life. Kidde has included this feature in all of its CO alarms since 2001.
"Kidde made the decision to include an end-of-life warning in all of our CO alarms nine years before it became a UL requirement," said John Andres, Director of Engineering for Kidde. "In addition, our alarms contain the world's most accurate CO sensing technology, offering a 40% longer life than other available brands. That's two more years of alerting New York families to deadly carbon monoxide in their homes."
Homeowners can find Kidde CO alarms at major home improvement retailers and mass merchants across New York. Safety experts recommend installing CO alarms on every level of the home and in sleeping areas.
For more information on Amanda's Law, or how to choose a CO alarm for your home, visit www.kidde.com.
Kidde Residential & Commercial is a business of UTC Fire & Security, a company that provides fire safety and security solutions to more than 1 million customers worldwide. Headquartered in Connecticut, UTC Fire & Security is a business unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX), which provides high technology products and services to the building and aerospace industries worldwide. More information can be found at www.utcfireandsecurity.com and www.kidde.com.