USFA Focus on Fire Safety: Residential Fire Sprinklers Save Lives

In 2009, only 20 percent of reported fires occurred in one- and two-family homes, but these fires caused 70 percent (2,107) of all civilian fire deaths. Homes also account for the largest share of civilian fire injuries and direct property damage. 

Despite the fact that these figures represent improvement over the last 30 years, they continue to be appalling.  Such losses are unacceptable.

The Building and Fire Research Laboratory at the National Institute of Standards and Technology has studied the impact of both smoke alarms and fire sprinklers in residential occupancies and estimates that:

1.       When fire sprinklers alone are installed, the chances of dying in a fire are reduced by 69 percent, when compared to a home without sprinklers.

2.       When smoke alarms alone are installed, a reduction in the death rate of 63 percent can be expected, when compared to a home without smoke alarms.

3.       When both smoke alarms and fire sprinklers are present, the risk of dying in a fire is reduced by 82 percent, when compared to a home without either.

Although smoke alarms can alert residents to a home fire, they cannot extinguish a fire.  Fire sprinkler systems can! Read more HERE.

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