Following a devastating, residential fire in New Jersey that spotlighted the dangers of lightweight construction
when it displaced more than 1,000 people, the developer plans to include sprinklers and other fire protection systems in its future developments.
Per an article in the Times of Trenton, AvalonBay, which built the 408-unit complex in Edgewater, will include more sprinklers and other safety features in its future housing developments in Maplewood and Princeton, New Jersey. "I've said all along that this is in their best interest to go above and beyond the current code, given what happened in Edgewater, so I do think this is a positive development," Princeton Mayor Liz Lempert told the paper.
If one legislator gets his way, homes across the Garden State will be protected by these safety measures, particularly home fire sprinklers. As a recent guest columnist for The Star-Ledger, New Jersey State Assemblyman John Wisniewski defended his decision to reintroduce the New Home Fire Safety Act, which would require sprinklers in new, one- and two-family homes. Last legislative session, the bill passed the New Jersey Assembly and Senate, but Gov. Chris Christie refused to sign the bill.
"The images of the Edgewater fire raging and the building collapsing in on itself are haunting," Wisniewski states in the opinion piece. "What's more haunting is to think what could have happened if everyone wasn't able to escape.&
"We all need to educate ourselves about fire safety ... and the benefits of residential fire sprinkler systems. And if you agree with me and support the New Home Fire Safety Act, contact your elected officials. This time, let the Edgewater fire be a catalyst for change. Let's not wait for another tragedy where lives may be lost."