JOHNSTON, R.I. – Research by FM Global and its affiliate Factory Mutual Research has revealed that K14 Early Suppression-Fast Response (ESFR) sprinklers may fail to perform as intended in buildings more than 40 feet (12.2 m) high.
Consequently, FM Global is no longer recommending that its policyholders use the K14 sprinklers as an alternative to in-rack sprinklers in buildings higher than 40 feet. Instead, policyholders are advised to install a combination of in-rack and ceiling sprinklers in accordance with FM Global property loss prevention engineering guidelines.
This storage configuration issue does not affect K25 ESFR sprinklers installed in 45-foot-high buildings or K14 or K25 sprinklers installed in buildings up to 40 feet (12.2 m) high.
The next version of FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheet 8-9, “Storage of Class 1, 2, 3 and 4 Plastic Commodities” will contain this new information. Additional installation guidelines on ESFR sprinklers are available on Data Sheet 2-2, “Installation Guidelines for Early Suppression-Fast Response Sprinklers.” The data sheets may be ordered through FM’s Web site at http://www.fmglobal.com/store or by calling FM Global Customer Services at (781) 255-6681. For additional information, call Steven Zenofsky at (401) 275-3000, ext. 1945.