The owner of a residential building needs to provide smoke alarms for his/her property. The owner of a residential building shall install and maintain a functional smoke detector in the basement and at the head of any stairway on each floor level of the building. Also, the owner shall install a functional smoke detector either in each sleeping area of each unit or elsewhere in the unit within 6 feet of each sleeping area and not in a kitchen.
The state legislature lists a variety of requirements for carbon monoxide alarms (CO); in short, carbon monoxide alarms are required if the building and units have fuel-burning appliances. They are required in units, outside of each separate sleeping area in the immediate vicinity of the sleeping rooms. Most furnaces and water heaters are located in the basement, therefore, a CO alarm shall be located in the basement away from the fuel burning unit to prevent a false activation.
Wisconsin law states that if a detector is not working the landlord shall be notified. Within five days after receipt of notification, the landlord shall provide any maintenance necessary to make the detector operational.
Additionally, the owner of a residential building is not liable for damages resulting from any of the following:
1. A false alarm from a carbon monoxide detector if the carbon monoxide detector was reasonably maintained by the owner of the residential building.
2. The failure of a carbon monoxide detector to operate properly if that failure was the result of tampering with, or removal or destruction of, the carbon monoxide detector by a person other than the owner or the result of a faulty detector that was reasonably maintained by the owner as required. This law is also applicable for smoke alarms as well.
Lastly, the landlord/owner is responsible for providing fire extinguishers as well. They shall be located in the common areas of the property and in the basement.