Coroner wants legislations for smoke alarms in every bedroom

The scene of the house fire at Slacks Creek.
The scene of the house fire at Slacks Creek. Griffith Thomas

THE cause of Australia's worst house fire that claimed 11 lives at Slacks Creek in Logan will remain a mystery.  

Coroner James McDougall could not find what caused the blaze in the Wagensveldt St house's downstairs office just before midnight on August 23, 2011.

  But he said there was no sign the fire in the Taufa and Lale families' home was deliberately lit.  

Mr McDougall, in his findings handed down on Friday, suggested some, or possibly all of the victims, could have survived if the house's two fire alarms were working.  

He recommended legislation ensuring all bedrooms had smoke alarms installed.  

Mr McDougall suggested if more than one alarm was required in a dwelling, the alarms should be interconnected through hard wiring where possible.   This would ensure when one alarm sounded, all sounded.  

If the legislation was changed, Mr McDougall's recommendations would impact all homeowners.  

But he stated smoke alarms were only part of the process to ensure lives were saved, noting a practised escape plan was another critical component.  

"The recommendations suggested by QFES and made by me as part of this inquest will lead directly to lives being saved if they are implemented," Mr McDougall said.   

"The measures recommended are easily put in place at little cost when compared to other household luxuries that are now considered normal household expenses such as flat screen televisions and the like."  


Topics:  fire smoke alarms

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