The Rawlins Fire Department in Rawlins, Wyoming hosted a side-by-side burn to promote home fire sprinklers and the impact was clear. As fire ravaged the unsprinklered room, "bystanders dumbstruck by the spectacular sight" as Rawlins' longtime fire chief John Rutherford narrated the "controlled catastrophe" reported Rawlins Times.com.
For the second part of the demonstration, the outcome was much different thanks to sprinklers. Even a stuffed monkey, which was placed on a small table survived the fire without a scratch.
If the demonstration wasn't enough, the chief then drew attention to the Carnes family who was in the crowd at the event. They have been displaced from their home for nearly four months, following a fire that was believed to have been caused by a "shoddy lightbulb."
From the outside, Michelle Carnes, explained you wouldn't know the devastation had occurred. "But, inside the house," she said, "It’s a complete loss."
John Carnes said sprinklers would have made a difference; had sprinklers been installed he said that the property damage could have been in the $500 ballpark as opposed to "$200,000."
A sprinkler system "would've prevented 98% of the damage," said Michelle.
In the City of Rawlins, residential structures are not required to have sprinkler systems.