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Nebraska Legislature passes bill to require carbon monoxide detectors

Nebraska Legislature passes bill to require carbon monoxide detectors

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LINCOLN — Nebraska lawmakers passed a bill Thursday to require that carbon monoxide detectors be installed when homes are sold, rented or significantly renovated.

Legislative Bill 34, introduced by State Sen. Sara Howard of Omaha, cleared final reading on a 39-2 vote. The measure represents a compromise among landlords, homebuilders, public health officials and others.

The bill’s backers said it would help prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, a serious health threat to people and animals. Opponents objected to creating a new government mandate.

As many as 500 people nationally die each year from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning. More than 20,000 wind up in emergency rooms because of it.

Carbon monoxide can build up indoors from sources such as faulty furnaces, poorly vented gas fireplaces or vehicles left running in attached garages.

LB 34 now goes to Gov. Pete Ricketts, who has until Wednesday to decide whether to sign it into law.

Contact the writer: 402-473-9583, martha.stoddard@owh.com

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