Issue 6 and Volume 144.

RESIDENTIAL AUTOMATIC SPRINKLERS: GRASS ROOTS INITIATIVES Of the 688,000 structure fires reported in 1989, according to NFPA statistics, 513,000 were in residential occupancies. Home fires killed every 121 minutes in 1989 and every 106 minutes in 1988. Annually, home fires claim about 80 percent of total fire deaths. It is easy, therefore, to understand the emphasis the fire service has been placing on residential sprinklers in recent years. “Residential fire protection systems have been proven technologically. We know they work and save lives,” asserts Ron Coleman, chief of the City of Fullerton (CA) Fire Department. Statistics show that there has never been a multiple loss of life in a fully fire-sprinklered building. In most cases, the fire is out before the fire department arrives—a crucial consideration when looked at in the light of the following data: A small flame can become an uncontrollable fire in 30 seconds; a whole room…

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