Did you know most fire deaths in North America happen at home? Last year in New Jersey alone, 41 people lost their lives to home fires, and 14 have died in home fires since the first of this year.
Many of these tragic deaths may have been prevented if a fire sprinkler system had been installed in these homes.
Raising public awareness about this life-saving technology and breaking down the myths and legislative barriers that hinder the use of fire sprinklers in homes are the focus of National Home Fire Sprinkler Week May 17-23. This initiative is sponsored by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
“Home Fire Sprinkler Week is the perfect time for families to learn the facts about fire sprinklers, to take proactive steps to reduce the risk of fire in the home, and to develop a working escape plan if a fire breaks out,” stated David Kurasz, Executive Director of the New Jersey Fire Sprinkler Advisory Board (NJFSAB).
This week is usually marked by free public Fire Safety and Fire Sprinkler Burn Trailer Demonstrations, but due to the gathering restrictions they have been postponed and observation of Home Fire Sprinkler week will be virtual.
“NJFAB traditionally conducts free demonstrations across New Jersey for schools, community groups and public events, and we hope to be able to resume in the fall, but for now there are a number of online resources available on SaveAndProtect.org and through the Home Fire Sprinkler Week sponsoring organizations that you can use, view and learn from,” noted Kurasz.
Important Fire Safety Facts:
- Children under 5 and senior citizens are at the highest risk for injury and death.
- Smoke detectors can sound the alarm, but do not put out fires.
- Newer homes burn faster and hotter than older homes due to modern lightweight construction building materials.
- 3-5 minutes is the average time you have to escape a home fire safely before flashover occurs.
- Top home fire causes are cooking, heating, electrical, smoking, and candles.
Fire Sprinkler Facts:
- Risk of dying in a home fire is reduced by about 85 percent if sprinklers are present.
- Property damage can be reduced by 70 percent if sprinklers are present.
- When sprinklers were present, fires were kept to the room of origin 97 percent of the time.
- 8 out of 10 Homeowners prefer a home protected by fire sprinklers.
- Fire sprinklers can stop a fire in less than 1 ½ minutes.
- Only the sprinkler closest to the fire will activate.
- Smoke can’t set off fire sprinklers, they are only activated by the high temperature of the fire.
- Most insurance companies reward customers who protect their homes with fire sprinklers.
“Fire safety education, installing smoke detectors and following prevention tips to reduce the chance of fire breaking out are all important,” said Kurasz, “but fire sprinklers, which have been saving lives and property for more than 100 years, offer one of the best front lines of defense against the devastating impact of home fires,” remarked Kurasz.
Requests for free fire safety and fire sprinkler burn demonstrations are currently being accepted for the summer and fall (dependent on COVID-19 restrictions). The burn demonstrations help people see first-hand how fire sprinklers work and how quickly and effectively they control fires. To view a video of a burn trailer demonstration visit: https://njfsab.org/resources/burn-trailer-demonstrations/
“Education is the key to being able to answer questions about fire sprinklers and help the public understand the benefits of having a home that is protected by fire sprinklers,” added Kurasz.
To learn more about sprinkler facts and myths or to book a Burn Trailer demonstration click here or call 1-866-226-6006.