Residential fires have already killed more than 40 people in South Carolina this year. Fire sprinklers can help end these tragedies in new homes, but the state lacks a requirement to sprinkler these dwellings. That's not stopping one advocate recently interviewed on a TV news station. Trying to sell sprinklers to potential homebuyers (and hopefully getting the attention of state decision makers) is one advocate who adequately answered the question, "If I fire sprinkler my new home, what's in it for me?"
"Some insurance agencies offer [financial] incentives," Kyle Minick, executive director of the South Carolina State Firefighters' Association and member of the South Carolina Fire Sprinkler Coalition, told an NBC news affiliate. (Minick was also a recipient of a Bringing Safety Home Award, distributed by NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative and the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition.) "I know [my insurance agency] did ... I got a reduction." (Download NFPA's fact sheet on home fire sprinkler discounts.)
Minick added that local homeowners can also write off 25 percent of expenses related to the system on their property and income taxes. And there's the life-saving aspect of fire sprinklers; NFPA's "U.S. Experience With Sprinklers" report notes that:
- the civilian death rate was 81 percent lower in homes with fire sprinklers than in homes without them
- the average firefighter injury rate was nearly 80 percent lower when fire sprinklers were present during fires
- when sprinklers were present, fires were kept to the room of origin 97 percent of the time
When promoting fire sprinklers to the public, please make sure you're promoting these incentives, and any other local discounts.