Similar to the nationwide debate on sprinklering one- and two-family dwellings, the argument of whether or not to sprinkler animal housing facilities centers on cost. Some parties responsible for overseeing these animals say sprinkler requirements could place undue burden on them during tough, economic times, while sprinkler advocates say cost shouldn't be an issue when it comes to saving lives.
A feature story in the latest edition of NFPA Journal examines this debate as well as related provisions and proposals to NFPA 150, Fire and Life Safety in Animal Housing Facilities. A certified amending motiion to require the sprinklering of all animal housing facilities--zoos, barns, poultry farms, animal testing laboratories, pet shops, and more--will be voted on at NFPA's Association Technical Meeting in Las Vegas in June.
Here's a snippet from the story, authored by NFPA 150 staff liaison Tracy Golinveaux:
Fires in all types of animal housing facilities in the U.S., including barns, have declined steadily for three decades. Despite the decline in the number of fires, the losses of animals can be every bit as staggering today as they were decades ago. According to Laurie Loveman, who runs the advocacy website Fire Safety in Barns, six separate fires in April 2011 alone killed eight lambs, 20 cattle, 31 horses, and 300,000 chickens. Her records for the year include information on more than 80 fires that killed 200 horses, 850 cattle, 15,000 sheep, 461,000 chickens, and 18,500 other fowl.
Read the entire feature in the latest issue of NFPA Journal, and watch a video of Golinveaux highlighting the evolving history of NFPA 150: