Making headlines recently are sprinkler opponents who challenge residential sprinkler ordinances already on the books in certain communities. See NFPA Journal’s recent article on sprinkler provisions nixed in Pennsylvania.
At the NFPA annual conference in Boston, one of the education sessions provided noteworthy guidance on keeping the momentum going once residential sprinkler provisions become law. “If you have a requirement in place and some of the [implementation and follow-through] isn’t being done and something goes wrong, every time there’s some sort of red flag, it gives opponents the chance to say, ‘We have to get rid of the sprinkler ordinance,’” said speaker Jim Narva, executive director for the National Association of State Fire Marshals.
Mr. Narva highlighted a new guidebook, available through the Residential Fire Safety Institute web site which addresses the permitting process; plan reviews and approval; inspection and testing procedures; and examples of successful implementations across the country.
The guidebook, “Bridging the Gap: A Guide to Implementing a Residential Sprinkler Requirement,” also drives the point home that communities should “never stop selling their sprinkler program,” especially after implementation, Mr. Narva said.