Fire Officials Unite Nationally to Advance Home Sprinklers

Originally published by: National Fire Protection AssociationApril 18, 2019

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Home fires claim the lives of seven people each day. Home fire sprinklers can help eliminate these tragedies, but legislative barriers and a general unawareness of this technology have prevented its use in new homes. America’s fire service and safety advocates will be able to take action in unison to raise national awareness of a fire sprinkler’s life-saving ability.

Fire Sprinkler Initiative®, a project of NFPA®, and the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition® (HFSC) are initiating Home Fire Sprinkler Week™ from May 19-May 25, 2019. This project tasks safety advocates across the U.S. with hosting simultaneous events promoting home fire sprinklers. While raising awareness of the home fire problem, these events will also underscore the life-saving impact of fire sprinklers and legislative barriers to its use. The aim is to have the fire service and other safety advocates host at least one sprinkler-related activity throughout the same week in all 50 states.

“The alarming number of home fire deaths and injuries each year should be on the radar of every decision maker and member of the media,” says NFPA Vice President of Outreach and Advocacy, and HFSC President Lorraine Carli. “Through these events, we hope to illuminate the fire problem and its solution on a national scale. Fire sprinklers have been a U.S. model building code requirement since 2009, yet challenges to its adoption still exist. Taking action collectively will send a powerful message that fire sprinklers are widely accepted and must be embraced in every state.” It is expected that events will also take place in Canada and United Kingdom.

Taking action is easy. Some possible activities include: hosting a side-by-side live burn/fire sprinkler demonstration or conducting a fire department open house featuring fire sprinkler information and sprinkler riser display.

The event’s webpage outlines ways to take action and resources for a successful event. Please visit NFPA.org/FireSprinklerWeek for more information.

KEY FACTS:

  • The risk of dying in a home fire decreases by about 85 percent if sprinklers are present.
  • When sprinklers were present, fires were kept to the room of origin 97 percent of the time.
  • In the event of a fire, typically only the sprinkler closest to the fire will activate, spraying water directly on the fire, leaving the rest of the house dry and secure. Roughly 89 percent of the time just one sprinkler operates.

 

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