Washington, DC – The United States Fire Administration (USFA) released a report that outlines an agreement between the administration and national fire protection professionals advocating the use of fire suppression and sprinkler systems. The report, titled National Residential Fire Sprinkler Initiative, outlines specific national strategies that might reduce the number of deaths due to home fires each year. In particular the report draws attention to the aspect of localized fire suppression in high-risk areas of the home and residential sprinklers in buildings supported by the federal government.
“We know how important residential sprinkler systems are,” said U.S. Fire Administrator R. David Paulison. “Every year, more than 3,000 people lose their lives in home fires, and most of those deaths are among the elderly, the disabled, the low income and the very young. Sprinkler systems are one way to reduce that number and to save the lives of community residents served by the nation’s fire service.”
The specific national strategies resulting from this meeting are to:
- Develop an aggressive strategy for advocating sprinklers in residential buildings influenced or supported by the federal government,
- Advocate localized sprinkler systems as a means of fire suppression in high risk areas (e.g., kitchens) for retrofit applications,
- Provide advocacy and informational support among stakeholders including state and local decision makers, and
- Ensure that the USFA continues to support research and development in residential fire sprinkler technology.
Related to these strategies, several tasks were identified by the group and will be considered for future programs, including conducting additional national level meetings and forming two coalition groups of partners. One would be a federal group to effect proposed changes in federally subsidized, leased and owned residential units, and the other, an allied professional group to address the differences between sprinkler advocates and adversaries.
To download the report, visit www.usfa.fema.gov/inside-usfa/media/03-071503.shtm.