Rain may have been in the forecast for many parts of North America on Saturday, May 19. However, it did not dampen efforts to finally give home fire sprinklers the widespread attention this technology deserves.
More than 50 events in 25 U.S. states and Canadian provinces took place on or around North America's first Home Fire Sprinkler Day. The project was an idea generated by sprinkler advocates and put into action by NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative and the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition. Using a little ingenuity and a ton of passion, advocates took local steps to raise awareness about a proven, life-saving technology and in the end energized a grassroots movement in support of sprinklers.
As news reports on these events filled my inbox and flooded my Twitter feed (check out the hashtag #HomeFireSprinklerDay to see what I saw), I felt a sense of pride for the countless number of advocates who had participated. The following is by no means an exhaustive list of what happened on Home Fire Sprinkler Day, just a sampling:
- In Philadelphia, a resident living in a sprinklered rowhome opened her doors to the media, as safety officials discussed sprinklers in homes and distributed sprinkler information around town.
- Members of the North Carolina Fire Sprinkler Coalition initiated a live burn/fire sprinkler demo to attendees at the 2018 Got to Be NC Festival. They have covered, grandstand seating to protect people from the rain.
- NFPA joined U.S. Fire Administrator G. Keith Bryant, Maryland State Fire Marshal Brian Geraci, and others for a Home Fire Sprinkler Day media event in College Park, Maryland.
- In addition to hosting a couple live burn/fire sprinkler demonstrations in South Carolina, the town of Tega City declared May 19 Home Fire Sprinkler Day. I had also heard that Scottsdale, Arizona, and Bend, Oregon, had signed proclamations for this day.
NFPA will be creating a digital gallery of all Sprinkler Day events. Please send your photos and a brief write-up to NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative team. To those who had participated in events and to members of the Sprinkler Day steering committee who got this project off the ground, thank you for making this inaugural event such a success!