Carbon monoxide detectors will now be mandatory in all residential buildings in Vancouver as part of beefed up penalties to discourage dangerous fire-related behaviour.

Amendments to the city's fire bylaw, which took effect Tuesday, include a daily fine of $750 for property owners who leave empty buildings and homes in an unsecured state.

Capt. Jonathan Gormick of Vancouver Fire and Rescue says the tougher measures have been introduced in response to an increase of vacant home fires and vandalism, as well as B.C. tragedies involving carbon monoxide, a odourless, colourless but highly poisonous gas.

"Earlier this year, a family of four lost their lives in Ashcroft, B.C., and the City of Vancouver has seen more than its fair share of near misses," Gormick said in a statement.

Anyone who maliciously sets off a fire alarm system or falsely reports a fire could now be hit with a $500 fine.

Smokers should also take note: A $500 fine can be levied against anyone found discarding burning materials, including cigarette butts.

"With the hope of avoiding another wave of completely preventable brush and vegetation fires, anyone tossing cigarettes or other burning material onto grass, vegetation or debris can be fined," Gormick added.

Homes with no fuel-fired appliances and no attached garage are exempt from the carbon monoxide detector bylaw.