The following was written by Gregg A. Cleveland, fire chief of the La Crosse, Wisconsin, Fire Department and chair of the Wisconsin Fire Sprinkler Coalition:
"Newer homes are safer homes" is a main argument from homebuilders pertaining to home fire sprinklers. I recently read an article from a leading homebuilding advocate that identified a number of reasons why homes should not require this technology, since "no one is dying in newly constructed homes." What, then, is a definition of a newly constructed home?
If I buy a new car, take it home, and bring it back years later, it is no longer a “new” car. I certainly will not get the same price I paid for it because it is no longer "new." When is a new home no longer new? When does it become an existing or old home? I have yet to find the answer to this question.
Recently a six-year-old Connecticut girl died in a Habitat for Humanity home that was constructed only months ago. The issue is not whether she died in a new or older home; the issue is she perished in her home, where most fire fatalities occur. I simply don’t understand the new-versus-old home analogy. All homes get old at some point. It is like getting hanged with an old rope or a new rope--the result is the same.
All homes become old at some point in their life cycle. It would seem logical that if we require new homes to have home fire sprinklers, we will not have fatalities in new or old homes.
Share this eye-catching infographic on social media and elsewhere to alert the public that the claim "new homes are safer homes" is bogus.