Why register? ...To Enhance Your Experience
+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 25
  1. #1
    Forum Member maximumflow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Matawan nj
    Posts
    92

    Question firefighter and occupant safety?

    in my response area as well as sorounding towns the new home construction is roughly 5200 sguare ft with no fire protection outside of the required codes. my question is should homes over a certain square footage be required to have sprinkler systems? these homes have 50' hallways, vaulted ceilings,lofts,3 story foyers,3 car garages etc. most of the fast team responses we have gone on to these homes in sorounding towns with the volume of fire on arrival bring this into question? anyones thoughts!!!

    "there is no greater family outside our own than the brotherhood of firefighters"

    helping people,
    it's what we do!
    capt.Dennis


  2. #2
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Pt. Beach, NJ
    Posts
    10,645

    Default

    my question is should homes over a certain square footage be required to have sprinkler systems?
    Better question, why not in all homes?
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

  3. #3
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Bossier Parrish, Louisiana
    Posts
    10,527

    Default

    Well, yes they should, but based on experience you will in all likelihood have on hell of a fight convincing your local powers that be that a sprinkler ordiance is a damn good idea. We attempted to have the town approve a rather modest sprinkler ordiance back in Vermont that would have included new apartments, attached homes (such as toenhouses and condos) and reduced the size needed for sprinklers in commercial buildings. Unfortunatly the buliders, who at least in this town, were a mighty strong and vocal bunch put up one heck of a fight and evantually the ordiance was defeated, even with a trade-off package being part of the ordiance that in the long run, would have cancelled out the additional cost of the sprinklers.
    Can it be done ? Sure, but it will take a tremendous effort on your part to work past the myths assoiciated with sprinkler systems and the opposistion of the building community. Good luck if you decide to try .... if only people understood how important a sprinkler system can be.

  4. #4
    Forum Member FiftyOnePride's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Upstate NY
    Posts
    471

    Default

    Sprinkler systems are easy to install and hide, they make our jobs easier and save lives in the process.

    1. Residential Sprinklers Save Lives

    The evidence on this point is overwhelming. There has not been a single residential fire fatality in a residence with a sprinkler system in either Napa, California or Cobb County, Georgia since the inception of those programs. There has not been a single fire fatality in Prince George's County, Maryland in a building with a sprinkler system. Scottsdale, Arizona credits sprinkler systems with saving up to 52 lives since the ordinance passed in 1985.

    A 1984 report by the Bureau of Standards/National Institute of Standards and Technology estimated that the effect of adding fire sprinklers when smoke detectors are already present could reduce the number of fire fatalities by 63 percent.

    A NFPA analysis of national data, collected from 1983 to 1992, indicates the number of fire deaths per 1,000 fires was reduced by 57 percent in homes with sprinklers.

    2. Residential Sprinklers Reduce Property Loss

    Again, the evidence is dramatic. Cobb County, Georgia and Napa, California reported minimal or incidental damage for all of their sprinkler activations, against potential losses extending into the millions, especially for Cobb's multi-family units. Nationally, average property loss in homes with sprinkers is 38% lower than homes without sprinklers, according to a NFPA survey of home fires reported to fire departments from 1983 - 1992.

    Where communities have a great deal of experience with residential fire sprinklers the property loss reduction can be much higher. In Scottsdale, fire loss hit a ten-year low in 1992, despite nearly 30 percent population growth in the city in the previous decade. Scottsdale's tracking data show that the average loss in a home with sprinklers in the city, since 1985, has been $1,382, while the figure for the average loss in a house without sprinklers is $3,928.
    This is quoted from: http://www.nfsa.org/info/thecase.html

    There is also a lot more there too, it gets into decreased insurance costs and the ease of installation.

    I'm just a big advocate of sprinkler systems. I think that every building should have them. But as a start your orginal question is how big of a structure should be to require sprinklers. I say anything more then 2,500 sq ft. But that is just a guess and opinion on my part.
    JLS
    MFC
    51 Pride - R.I.P. Sandy
    Alarm 200644004, I won't ever forget.


    Remember you only have 1*.

    IACOJ

  5. #5
    Forum Member nmfire's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Maryland (DC Suburb)
    Posts
    5,738

    Default

    Of course it is a good idea! But have fun convincing the powers that be of this. People with money or wanting money tend to have a louder voice than us, who simply use things like logic and fact.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

  6. #6
    Forum Member maximumflow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Matawan nj
    Posts
    92

    Question safety

    many years ago seat belts were instaled in cars because they lessoned injuries and deaths and the insur. industry did not stop there! they continued until present and know we have everyone in seat belts and air bags all around the car with rear passenger air bags not to far off! my point is there has to be a starting point like the seat belts and not stop there.

    bones, i agree 100% that every home should have sprinkler systems but a blanket change is not realistic to most legislators,the ones that creat the laws!

    la fire educator, in your persuit were any state officals or insur. industry reps on hand to plead the case of the savings to life property and injuries to fire fighters and the savings to the town insur. alone? also how much support did your FD have in the attempt from other local FD's

    fifty one pride, i also am an advocate and firm believer in sprinkler systems because the proof is overwhelming! the idea that with this much proof and the benefits of having them that on a national bases the fire service has not persued it like the insur. co's do with the automobile is beyond me? how many more brothers and citizens do we have to lose before they see the light??? in teaneck nj the loss of those children would not have happened if they had sprinklers and the fire dept would not be on the chopping block!!

    nm fire, you said it best, it's all about money and whos pocket it goes in, the sad part is i guess they don't realize how much more they could make by installing sprinkler systems than the loses they take across the board !!!


    "there is no greater family outside our own than the brotherhood of firefighters"

    helping people,
    it'swhat we do!
    capt.Dennis
    Last edited by maximumflow; 03-28-2005 at 08:41 PM.

  7. #7
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Posts
    2,983

    Default

    maximumflow

    There are a number of reports at the USFA site as well. Whatever happened to the National Residential Sprinkler Initiative? Did it die in some legislative committee? I brought this topic up for the current paper I am researching and the first comment I had back was "I am biased" (this paper is for a research writing class. What can I say, I guess am biased towards saving lives.

    http://www.usfa.fema.gov/research/ds...sprinkler.shtm

    The United States Fire Administration advocates the use of automatic fire sprinklers to save lives, reduce injuries and protect property. Based on an identified history of success, this technology should be employed in all residential occupancies.

    Since it's creation in the 1970's, the United States Fire Administration has been actively involved in the research and development of residential sprinkler systems and an advocate for their use. Yet more than 3,000 people lose their lives in residential fires every year.

    To revitalize the USFA residential sprinkler program Administrator R. David Paulison hosted a National Residential Sprinkler Strategy meeting in April 2003 for a cross section of fire protection professionals from throughout the country to consult on the development of a national strategy with shared responsibility for implementation of the proposed initiatives. A second meeting was held in June 2004 to share thoughts and review the progress of the collective group of participants and their organizations toward increasing the proportion of U.S. homes protected by residential sprinkler systems.

    The goal is to develop and implement policies that have an immediate National impact and to identify and strive to remove barriers inhibiting the acceptance and use of residential fire sprinklers to reduce life loss and injuries.

    The proposed national strategies include:

    Advocacy for sprinkler systems in occupancies the Federal government influences
    Promotion of localized fire suppression in high fire-risk areas for retrofit applications.
    Development of partnerships for advocacy and informational support
    Support for continuing research and development

  8. #8
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Denver
    Posts
    55

    Default Re: safety

    Originally posted by maximumflow
    many years ago seat belts were instaled in cars because they lessoned injuries and deaths and the insur. industry did not stop there! they continued until present and know we have everyone in seat belts and air bags all around the car with rear passenger air bags not to far off! my point is there has to be a starting point like the seat belts and not stop there.

    bones, i agree 100% that every home should have sprinkler systems but a blanket change is not realistic to most legislators,the ones that creat the laws!
    Ok, but in keeping with your analogy, I feel as though smoke detectors are the "seat belt" of fire safety. Do they prevent all injuries or deaths? No, but I don't think anyone here would argue their overwhelming effectiveness (when used properly, just like a seatbelt).

    Car mfr's didn't just suddenly install two airbags up front and all down the sides, or create better unibody construction overnight. These things took time to gain widespread acceptance, and begain in smaller segments of the market. Ininitially they cost auto manufacturers a ton of money, in the end I think it helps them ("so and so makes safer cars than xxx based on government safety ratings", we all hear the ads every day on TV).

    I believe there just about needs to be a federal-level initiative to make homes not only more fire resistant and easy to escape, but less likely to turn into an inferno in the first place. Start with the big ones (anyone dumping the cash on a 4000sqft house can afford a little extra plumbing, and sprinkler systems are hardly new technology) and work your way down, until it becomes a selling point for new home manufacturers. If the government mandates that houses with 3000sqft+ have sprinklers in hallways, bedrooms, and egress points, and some manufacturer starts putting them into 2500sqft houses because "it exceeds government safety standards", they are going to sell more homes.

    The problem here is that you're thinking in terms of a firefighter or someone else simply concerned with "doing the right thing". Breaking even to mitigate risk isn't enough either. Try approaching it like this... Inform families that a sprinkler system in the home exponentially increases their chances of a safe exit and salvageable home (i.e. keeping their "lives" intact, both literally and figuratively). Explain to insurance companies that fixing a little water damage is FAR less expensive than rebuilding a $300,000 home that was gutted, when simply getting some water on the fire early on would have cost a whole lot less. Also have insurance companies offer discounts and incentives for fire insurance on homes with sprinkler systems. And lastly, illustrate to home builders in very real terms of dollars, how installing these systems in a phased implementation approach will actually *make them more money* and give them some marketing points over their competition.

    Bottom line is, families are interested in safety, but don't want to pay extra for it. Policy makers don't want to force it, because their voters pay for it. Insurance companies don't give a crap yet because it isn't widespread enough to matter. And home builders ONLY care about PROFIT. If you can find the magic formula that appeases the fears of these different groups while catering to their desires, ask and ye shall receive.

    It isn't as simple as saying "you will ultimately break even in the long run". You have to make it more attractive, even if it only appears to be so (I'm not saying lie here, just change how you sell the product). You have to think like a parent, a lawmaker, and a corporate officer all at the same time. I would suggest studying how various groups convinced the government to mandate things like seatbelts and airbags even in the face of highly influential lobby groups (i.e. auto manufacturers) for some hints and ideas.

  9. #9
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Jul 1999
    Location
    Flanders, NJ
    Posts
    13,537

    Default

    In the recent edition of NFPA Fire Journal, they announced that both the Life Safery Code and the Building Code have been amended to REQUIRE sprinklers in new construction one and two fmaily homes.

    I know that this does not helpall of you, but it is certainly a start.

  10. #10
    Forum Member FiftyOnePride's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Upstate NY
    Posts
    471

    Default

    Originally posted by GeorgeWendtCFI
    I know that this does not helpall of you, but it is certainly a start.

    George, that is all that we can ask for: to get our foot in our hallagan's in the door and wedge it open so sprinkler systems do become as prevalent as seat belts.


    Off to see The Ring 2; have a good day everyone!
    Last edited by FiftyOnePride; 03-29-2005 at 09:00 AM.
    JLS
    MFC
    51 Pride - R.I.P. Sandy
    Alarm 200644004, I won't ever forget.


    Remember you only have 1*.

    IACOJ

  11. #11
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Pt. Beach, NJ
    Posts
    10,645

    Default

    my point is there has to be a starting point like the seat belts and not stop there
    Unfortunately, it appears they stopped at buses.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

  12. #12
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    23

    Default

    As was stated already, Getting sities to make the rules tougher is unlikely. Most cities such as mine have voted to accept the uniform sprinkler code in our state. The problem we have is a few buildings in our city that have been built in such a way to avoid the expense of putting in sprinklers. Some of the building have gone so far as to make sure they dont endure these cost by building their building a foot short of the sq.ft requirement. It happens everywhere. Convincing city councils and state law makers to make a change is unlikey going to happen soon. The info is out there, but its more important for them to know how much money they will be paid next year than the saftey of the people that put them in those seats.

    HFD4144
    This is my view of this item and not that of the city or fire department for which I belong to.

  13. #13
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Bossier Parrish, Louisiana
    Posts
    10,527

    Default

    One of the keys involved with making sprinklers more common is getting the fire department actively invoved in "selling" the concept of sprinklers to the public, government officials and contractors. Unfortuantly, that involves numerous public appearences, media contacts and interviews and many, many, many hours in meetings with planners, public officials and buiilding company officials to hammer out code details. The reality is that most departments simply don't have the manpower, or are not willing to commit the manpower needed for this type of long-term, comprehensive public education effort. Until the fire service realizes the long-term importance of sprinklers, and staffs thier department with the manpower needed to promote the concept at ALL levels, they will languish at the bottom of the priority list.

    Going along with that, how many new fire stations are built with sprinklers? 5%? 10%? 15%? Until the fire service starts building EVERY new station with sprinklers, the public will not take our efforts seriously.

  14. #14
    Forum Member maximumflow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Matawan nj
    Posts
    92

    Question

    LA
    Good thought ! Our station is guilty ! and so is my residence! but i will make an effert to changh that and become part of the solution and not the problem!! "PRACTICE WHAT WE PREACH" IT'S A NO BRAINER.

    "THERE IS NO GREATER FAMILY OUTSIDE OUR OWN THAN THE BROTHERHOOD OF FIREFIGHTERS"

    helping people,
    it's what we do!
    capt.Dennis

  15. #15
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Pt. Beach, NJ
    Posts
    10,645

    Default

    Until the fire service starts building EVERY new station with sprinklers
    Let's look a little smaller and at least get every station to put in smoke detectors!
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

  16. #16
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Bossier Parrish, Louisiana
    Posts
    10,527

    Default

    Bones, hyou are so very right. We sit here and talk, talk, talk to the public about the importance of smoke detectors, and I bet 50% of our nation's stations don't have them. If we are going to be taken seriously, WE need to lead .....

  17. #17
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    248

    Default

    I agree sprinklers in residential homes would have a direct impact on life safety and property conservation. Unfortunately, it would give those bean counters more ammunition to downsize an already thinning fire service.

  18. #18
    Forum Member maximumflow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Matawan nj
    Posts
    92

    Thumbs up safety

    i must say this much that our station has a fire alarm system that operates and we are talking about a new station that yes ,includes a sprinkler system! we are guilty of not having a sprinkler system in our present station though!

    "there is no greater family outside our own than the brotherhood of firefighters"

    helping people,
    its what we do!
    capt.Dennis

  19. #19
    Forum Member maximumflow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Matawan nj
    Posts
    92

    Question safety

    bones,
    not trying to start anything but why just the one liners with the quotes. a subject that's as serious as life safety issues and worthy of a post i think would have more substance?

    "there is no greater family outside our own than the brotherhood of firefighters"

    helping people,
    it's what we do!
    capt.Dennis

  20. #20
    MembersZone Subscriber arhaney's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Wren, MS Until the forum gremlins pay a visit!
    Posts
    1,448

    Default Re: safety

    Originally posted by maximumflow
    bones,
    not trying to start anything but why just the one liners with the quotes. a subject that's as serious as life safety issues and worthy of a post i think would have more substance?

    I'll answer that one for you, if you don't mind there Bones42. A lot can be said with just a few words!
    Chief
    Wren Volunteer Fire Department
    IACOJ
    Southern Division

    http://www.wrenfiredepartment.4t.com/

    In Memory of:
    FireFighter/Pilot James Archer
    1946-2005
    "Rest in peace James, you now have the ultimate set of wings on you."

    Thanks, LeuitEFDems

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts