Fire chiefs in Grand County, Colorado, have joined forces, pushing to keep sprinkler requirements for all new one- and two-family homes in the latest edition of the International Building Code.
According to a report in the Sky-Hi Daily News, each fire chief in the district has signed a statement in support of the sprinkler requirements. "The sprinkler requirement is meant to save lives more than save homes," said East Grand Fire Chief Todd Holzwarth. Today's homes are many times made with lighter materials and engineered woods, which cause them collapse earlier in a fire.
See a recent NFPA Journal® article that details the relationship between fire and engineered wood construction assemblies.
The Sky-Hi Daily News article also notes that energy-efficient home designs also cause tighter indoor-air environments, which can more aggressively trap in smoke and heat during a fire. This means occupants have considerably less time before deadly air overtakes the home. The article says that Grand County Commissioners have postponed a decision until Oct. 27 on adopting the 2009 International Building Codes.