New Legislation in Texas to Reduce Residential Fire Deaths and Injuries

As of January 1, 2008, homeowners and homebuilders in the State of Texas will have to meet stricter fire safety codes. The Texas state legislature recently passed legislation requiring homeowners and homebuilders to disclose the presence of a working smoke alarm in all new one- and two-family homes in order to complete real estate transactions. According to fire safety experts at PEARL Protected®, creators of the patented Permanent Escape And Rescue Ladder (PEARL®) for two and three-story homes, this legislation will play a vital role in the effort to reduce the number of house fire-related deaths and injuries throughout Texas.

The bill, entitled the Texas Real Estate Disclosure Act, identifies a perilous gap in fire safety. While most states require a working smoke alarm in new homes, they do not require the disclosure of such information in real estate transactions. This leaves a significant part of homeowners -- especially those who live in older homes -- unprotected under the law. According to the National Fire Protection Association, an astounding 65 percent of reported home fire deaths occur in homes that do not have a working smoke alarm.

The legislation also requires homeowners and homebuilders to disclose other fire safety devices present within a home, including the availability of emergency escape ladders. PEARL Protected CEO, David Duley, comments:

"For the first time, Texans will have the right information to determine if a house is adequately protected against the threat of fire before they complete the home buying process. We think this positive pressure on homeowners and homebuilders will result in more working smoke alarms, a wider availability of escape solutions and, ultimately, a lower number of fire-related deaths and injuries in Texas communities."

Since its October 2005 debut, the PEARL permanent escape ladders has become one of the most recognized home safety products in the marketplace. The PEARL ladder is permanently recessed into the interior wall space beneath second and third-story windows. By simply tossing the ladder out the window, PEARL provides a reliable, easy-to-use means of escape that is right where you need it, when you need it -- like an air bag for the home. Currently there are more than a dozen homebuilders in Texas who offer the PEARL permanent escape ladder as a standard or optional feature in new construction.

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