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Fred Durso, Jr.
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If you're a "numbers person," you'll thoroughly enjoy this article by a sprinkler advocate that calls into question a 2014 report by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), titled "State and Metro House Prices: the 'Priced Out Effect.'" The report cites how new construction regulations can impact housing affordability and lead to a staggering number of "priced-out" households. For instance, the report states that a $1,000 increase in price makes homes unaffordable for more than 200,000 households. But take a closer look at NAHB's report and you'll notice some misleading findings, says Buddy Dewar, vice president of Regional Operations... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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We're giving home fire sprinkler advocates across North America extra time to submit applications for NFPA's Bringing Safety Home Grant. The deadline for submissions has been extended to April 30. This is your chance to secure up to $10,000 to fund an extensive sprinkler campaign or project in your state or region. Craving some ideas on how to use these funds? We've developed a menu of options that includes: creating a state/regional sprinkler summit bringing together key allies to share information and develop a sprinkler strategy developing a local advertising campaign underscoring the benefits of home fire sprinklers initiating a... Continue reading
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We're giving home fire sprinkler advocates across North America extra time to submit applications for NFPA's Bringing Safety Home Grant. The deadline for submissions has been extended to April 30. This is your chance to secure up to $10,000 to fund an extensive sprinkler campaign or project in your state or region. Craving some ideas on how to use these funds? We've developed a menu of options that includes: creating a state/regional sprinkler summit bringing together key allies to share information and develop a sprinkler strategy developing a local advertising campaign underscoring the benefits of home fire sprinklers initiating a... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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Here's a short-and-sweet example from our friends at the Idaho Fire Sprinkler Coalition on the rapid response of home fire sprinklers. Earlier this year, a resident discarded smoking materials in a small, plastic trashcan in her garage. A fire spread from the trashcan to a nearby upholstered chair, eventually activating a sprinkler head. (Sprinklers in accordance to NFPA 13D, Installation of Sprinkler Systems in One- and Two-Family Dwellings and Manufactured Homes, are not required in garages. The resident's jurisdiction, however, requires sprinklers in these areas when an occupied living area is above the garage.) The sprinkler head completely extinguished the... Continue reading
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Here's a short-and-sweet example from our friends at the Idaho Fire Sprinkler Coalition on the rapid response of home fire sprinklers. Earlier this year, a resident discarded smoking materials in a small, plastic trashcan in her garage. A fire spread from the trashcan to a nearby upholstered chair, eventually activating a sprinkler head. (Sprinklers in accordance to NFPA 13D, Installation of Sprinkler Systems in One- and Two-Family Dwellings and Manufactured Homes, are not required in garages. The resident's jurisdiction, however, requires sprinklers in these areas when an occupied living area is above the garage.) The sprinkler head completely extinguished the... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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Firefighter and homebuilder Kevin Fitzpatrick (center) cost-effectively sprinklered his parents' new home in Alsip, Illinois. One might expect to find Chicago Firefighter Kevin Fitzpatrick fighting fires on the roofs of residences, but he’s also been seen installing fire-treated plywood on the roofs of new homes. As owner of Wilmot Builders, Fitzpatrick recently assisted with the build of a new, sprinkler-protected home for his parents, John and Lynn Fitzpatrick, in Alsip, Illinois. The single-family home is an outcome of the village’s sprinkler ordinance, which is in accordance with NFPA 13D, Installation of Sprinkler Systems in One- and Two-Family Dwellings and Manufactured... Continue reading
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An unfortunate lesson was learned in Maryland, a state with sprinkler ordinances in all of its counties. During a recent fire in a sprinkler-protected home in the city of Bowie, modifications to the home hampered the sprinkler's performance, resulting in fire injuries to the homeowners. According to a news release by the National Fire Sprinkler Association (NFSA), a dropped ceiling blocked the fire sprinklers, thus impacting its ability to perform. "Sprinkler systems in houses are essentially maintenance free," said Jason Webb, NFSA's director of Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance. "But when you make modifications that block the fire sprinklers, you have... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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Firefighter and homebuilder Kevin Fitzpatrick (center) cost-effectively sprinklered his parents' new home in Alsip, Illinois. One might expect to find Chicago Firefighter Kevin Fitzpatrick fighting fires on the roofs of residences, but he’s also been seen installing fire-treated plywood on the roofs of new homes. As owner of Wilmot Builders, Fitzpatrick recently assisted with the build of a new, sprinkler-protected home for his parents, John and Lynn Fitzpatrick, in Alsip, Illinois. The single-family home is an outcome of the village’s sprinkler ordinance, which is in accordance with NFPA 13D, Installation of Sprinkler Systems in One- and Two-Family Dwellings and Manufactured... Continue reading
Posted Apr 10, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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Seeing firsthand the personal and physical destruction caused by home fires, the fire service can be a vital--and necessary--ally in advancing home fire sprinklers. This was one of the conclusions published in an article that appeared in a recent edition of New Solutions Journal. While underscoring the evolution of sprinkler technology and new construction challenges that emphasize the need for these devices, the article also highlights the role firefighters can play in promoting sprinklers. For instance, the article, "Preventing Fire-Related Occupational Deaths: Residential Sprinklers Save Civilians, Property, and Firefighters," references an addendum to NFPA's "U.S. Experience with Sprinklers" report that... Continue reading
Posted Apr 9, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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The headlines were horrific: "Brooklyn Fire Kills Seven Children, City's Worst Toll Since 2007" --The New York Times "Father Grieves for Seven Kids Killed in Brooklyn Fire" --New York Daily News "Seven Children Die in Fire as Mother Pleads For Help" --Associated Press The March tragedy is an alarming wake-up call about the gravity of home fires. Equally frustrating to members of the New York fire service is the fact that the state's building code hasn't been updated in more than nine years. Advocates have joined forces to urge the New York State Fire Prevention and Building Code Council to... Continue reading
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The headlines were horrific: "Brooklyn Fire Kills Seven Children, City's Worst Toll Since 2007" --The New York Times "Father Grieves for Seven Kids Killed in Brooklyn Fire" --New York Daily News "Seven Children Die in Fire as Mother Pleads For Help" --Associated Press The March tragedy is an alarming wake-up call about the gravity of home fires. Equally frustrating to members of the New York fire service is the fact that the state's building code hasn't been updated in more than nine years. Advocates have joined forces to urge the New York State Fire Prevention and Building Code Council to... Continue reading
Posted Apr 7, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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Free money alert! The Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition (HFSC) has announced a new stipend program for U.S. and Canadian fire departments that funds eye-catching live burn/sprinkler demonstrations. The $1,000 stipends will pay for the materials needed for demonstration units and other costs. HFSC already gives free guidance on constructing these units and hosting these events via its Fire and Sprinkler Burn Demonstration Kit. Only fire departments that are members of HFSC’s free Built For Life Fire Department Program can apply for the stipend. (If your department isn't one, sign up today.) More than 2,500 departments have already committed to making... Continue reading
Posted Apr 6, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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Since the fire service frequently speaks to the news media about residential fires, this group can also play a major role in communicating important information on home fire sprinklers. The California Fire Sprinkler Coalition has developed a fire service media guide, a tool that provides key information that can be used in front of cameras and reporters. For instance, the guide underscores language that highlights a sprinkler's reliability, aesthetics, installation, water requirements, cost, and insurance discounts. The document also includes sample sound bites which are likely to get picked up by the media, including "The quick response of the fire... Continue reading
Posted Apr 1, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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On a blistery cold morning in Fall River, Massachusetts, Firefighter Paul Machado and his crew were tasked with searching for a missing woman inside a two-and-a-half story home on fire. While inside the dwelling, their efforts were exacerbated by the fast-moving blaze, which knocked Machado to the ground. He attempted to seek safety by heading down to the first floor, but the fire was too intense. Since his radio had melted, calling in a "Mayday" was impossible. His only opportunity for escape was to fling himself from a window. He sustained numerous injuries and burns from the incident. He was... Continue reading
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On a blistery cold morning in Fall River, Massachusetts, Firefighter Paul Machado and his crew were tasked with searching for a missing woman inside a two-and-a-half story home on fire. While inside the dwelling, their efforts were exacerbated by the fast-moving blaze, which knocked Machado to the ground. He attempted to seek safety by heading down to the first floor, but the fire was too intense. Since his radio had melted, calling in a "Mayday" was impossible. His only opportunity for escape was to fling himself from a window. He sustained numerous injuries and burns from the incident. He was... Continue reading
Posted Mar 31, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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Two-and-a-half minutes. That's the amount of time it took a fire inside a wooden structure housing a sofa, end table, and other furnishings to reach flashover--the point when all objects in a room simultaneously hit their ignition temperature. Nothing living survives a flashover. Flames funneled out of the eight-by-eight mock living room as spectators, standing nearly 30 feet from the fire, felt the heat. The event, held at NFPA headquarters in Quincy, Massachusetts, to a group of more than 100 people, was too eye-catching to merely watch; many recorded it with their smartphones. The majority of spectators have a vested... Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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The Garden State experienced a win in its push for increased safety in homes when the state Senate recently passed a bill to sprinkler all new, one- and two-family homes. The bill heads to the governor's desk for a signature. Learn about the massive fire that prompted this bill by reading the latest edition of NFPA'S Fire Sprinkler Initiative newsletter. Other news items include information on: the deadly trio found in today's homes NFPA's new Bringing Safety Home Grant, which gives sprinkler advocates the chance to secure $10,000 for localized advocacy efforts water supply options for home fire sprinklers Don't... Continue reading
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The Garden State experienced a win in its push for increased safety in homes when the state Senate recently passed a bill to sprinkler all new, one- and two-family homes. The bill heads to the governor's desk for a signature. Learn about the massive fire that prompted this bill by reading the latest edition of NFPA'S Fire Sprinkler Initiative newsletter. Other news items include information on: the deadly trio found in today's homes NFPA's new Bringing Safety Home Grant, which gives sprinkler advocates the chance to secure $10,000 for localized advocacy efforts water supply options for home fire sprinklers Don't... Continue reading
Posted Mar 26, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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NFPA has examined the demographics of fatal and non-fatal victims of home fires. The report, "Characteristics of Home Fire Victims," highlights the age, sex, race, and region of victims, giving safety advocates crucial information on important trends. Here are some key finds: From 1980 to 2011, the percentage of fatal home fire victims under five years old fell from 18 to six percent. During that same time frame, the number of fire victims over age 65 increased from 19 to 31 percent. More surprising is that 30 percent of all home fire fatalities were at least 65 years old, but... Continue reading
Posted Mar 25, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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The United Kingdom recently celebrated Fire Sprinkler Week 2015, an event that encourages sprinkler installation in various settings via information-sharing and other activities. Sprinkler myth-busting was a vital component of this event. While the event this year focused its messaging on the necessity of sprinklering educational and business establishments, home fire sprinklers got its fair share of attention. The devices, which have the approval of many in the U.K. fire service, made recent headlines after the English town of Oswestry decided to enact a pilot program that would install them in a two-bedroom bungalow. The head of a local fire... Continue reading
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The United Kingdom recently celebrated Fire Sprinkler Week 2015, an event that encourages sprinkler installation in various settings via information-sharing and other activities. Sprinkler myth-busting was a vital component of this event. While the event this year focused its messaging on the necessity of sprinklering educational and business establishments, home fire sprinklers got its fair share of attention. The devices, which have the approval of many in the U.K. fire service, made recent headlines after the English town of Oswestry decided to enact a pilot program that would install them in a two-bedroom bungalow. The head of a local fire... Continue reading
Posted Mar 24, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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Looking to spread the word on the importance of home fire sprinklers in your community or state, but lack the necessary funds to create something spectacular? Now's your chance to secure up to $10,000 through the Fire Sprinkler Initiative's Bringing Safety Home Grant Program, which will assist as many as 10 selected U.S. state sprinkler coalitions and other safety advocates throughout the United States and Canada by furthering activities that showcase the importance of fire sprinklers. Momentum around sprinkler advocacy continues to build as more and more residents and policy makers understand the value of installing these devices in new... Continue reading
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Looking to spread the word on the importance of home fire sprinklers in your community or state, but lack the necessary funds to create something spectacular? Now's your chance to secure up to $10,000 through the Fire Sprinkler Initiative's Bringing Safety Home Grant Program, which will assist as many as 10 selected U.S. state sprinkler coalitions and other safety advocates throughout the United States and Canada by furthering activities that showcase the importance of fire sprinklers. Momentum around sprinkler advocacy continues to build as more and more residents and policy makers understand the value of installing these devices in new... Continue reading
Posted Mar 23, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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Having witnessed 60 fire deaths over a span of 27 years, Assistant Fire Chief Danny Beeler fought back tears while urging a Tennessee Senate Commerce Committee to consider these losses. "I've seen too many bodies," Beeler, a member of the Tennessee Fire Sprinkler Coalition, told the committee, according to a story by the Knoxville News Sentinel. "Please don't take an action that will put (people) ... in greater danger." This "action" Beeler refers to is the passage of legislation that would prohibit the requirement of fire sprinkler systems for townhouses by any local or statewide adopted building codes. The law... Continue reading
Posted Mar 20, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative
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California's path to a statewide sprinkler requirement was as long and windy as the Yellow Brick Road. Prior to the mandate taking effect in 2011, local communities, one-by-one, decided to embrace mandatory installations, the first city being San Clemente in 1979. Getting all stakeholders on board to expand the requirement statewide might have seemed like a feat for Oz, but fortunately State Fire Marshal Tonya Hoover knew how to make it happen. Despite the successes in California, Hoover is quick to point out that the statewide adoption "was only the beginning." NFPA Journal had a recent conversation with Hoover on... Continue reading
Posted Mar 19, 2015 at NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative