NFPA responds to critique of home fire sprinklers and claim that the fire service will financially benefit from sprinkler requirements

Blog Post created by freddurso Employee on Dec 18, 2015

6a0162ff1d4766970d01bb08a0b5c0970d-800wi.pngNFPA President Jim Pauley

NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative team came across a blog post written by a Massachusetts policy and communications adviser. In his post, titled "Outcry for Mandating Sprinklers Not Coming From the Public", he questions the importance of home fire sprinklers in all new homes while listing an array of inaccuracies and misstatements, including:

  • home sprinklers don't seem to offer significantly greater protection than smoke alarms, a statement countered by NFPA research
  • sprinkler requirements will negatively impact the housing market
  • firefighters will "be in the position to benefit financially" from sprinkler requirements, since home fire sprinklers require annual inspections from the fire service

Not taking these inaccuracies lightly, NFPA President Jim Pauley drafted a response to the blog post. "NFPA does not only back the installation of fire sprinklers in new homes for their ability to significantly reduce the risk of dying in home fires; sprinklers are also a requirement found in every model building code used in the U.S.," states Pauley in his letter. "Most Americans wouldn’t dare get into a new vehicle if it lacked seatbelts and airbags, since my guess is they would consider it a substandard vehicle lacking all of the modern features developed to keep them safe. Living in a new home without sprinklers is synonymous to entering a new car devoid of these features."

Visit NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative blog for more on this story.