Fred Durso

Fire sprinkler ordinances: an important lesson in grassroots efforts

Blog Post created by Fred Durso Employee on Apr 7, 2014

This may come as a surprise to sprinkler opponents, but the website Grassroots Change has named the home fire sprinkler movement "one of the most successful public safety efforts" in America within the past three decades. According to a recent study, this grassroots movement has successfully promoted more than 360 local ordinances mandating sprinklers in all new residential construction, including one- and two-family homes, since 1978. Successful, indeed.

The recent article on the website backs its statement by highlighting an impressive effort taking place in Mesa, Arizona. While the state prohibits local jurisdictions from requiring sprinklers in homes, the city has been using specialized grants to install sprinklers in low- and moderate-income housing. This approach has not only increased public safety, but has also energized community development.

"To date, Mesa's initiative has resulted in the installation of sprinklers in 29 single-family and 29 multi-family homes," states the article. "Not only will these investments save lives and property, they have created or saved jobs in the construction industry."

Read the story on NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative site to learn more about Mesa's efforts. Also, check out the following video with Arizona Councilmember Scott Somers, who has taken the lead on this initiative.