Fire sprinklers are included in all model safety codes for new one- and two-family dwellings. The age of the home issue has been brought up by opponents of residential fire sprinkler systems who boast that newer homes are safer homes and that the fire and death problem is limited to older homes.
Age of housing is a poor predictor of fire death rates. When older housing is associated with higher rates, it usually is because older housing tends to have a disproportionate share of poorer, less educated households. Statistically, the only fire safety issue that is relevant to the age of http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef0153908fb1ea970b-pithe home is outdated electrical wiring. Beyond that, age of the home has little to nothing to do with fire safety. A fire is just as deadly in a newer home at 2:00 a.m. than it is in a 30 year old home.http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef0153908faf15970b-pi
A study conducted by Underwriter Laboratories in 2008 reveals that new methods of construction negatively impact occupant and firefighter life safety under fire conditions. The findings of the report, Structural Stability of Engineered Lumber in Fire Conditions, point to the failure of lightweight engineered wood systems when exposed to fire. These structure are prone to catastrophic collapse as early a six minutes from the onet of fire.
Larger homes, open spaces, increased fuel loads, void spaces, and changing building materials contribute to:
- Faster fire propagation
- Shorter time to flashover
- Rapid changes in fire dynamics
- Shorter escape time
- Shorter time to collapse
Fire sprinklers can offset the increased dangers posed by lightweight construction and create a safer fire environment for occupants and for firefighters to operate in.
When buying a new home consider a fire sprinkler system, even if not required in your area, to protect your family and home from the devastation of fire.