From hotels and warehouses to hospitals, for property managers potential fires are a worrying concern — and fire sprinkler systems can make a significant difference in terms of both financial and human life loss. In fact, in 91% of all reported structure fires large enough to activate sprinklers, excluding buildings under construction and buildings without sprinklers in the fire area, sprinklers functioned effectively, according to a study of building fires.
In completely sprinklered buildings with functional systems, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has no record of a fire killing more than two people. Commercial fire sprinkler systems with quick response features can release between eight and 24 gallons of water per minute, which is as effective much less damaging to property that the 80 to 125 gallons per minute discharged by a fire hose.
Most importantly overall injuries, loss of life and property damage can be reduced by as much as 50% in building with early warning systems and automatic fire sprinklers. When you consider that $76 million in property damage is reported each year in hotel and motel fires and 15 deaths and 150 injuries are reported, the need for a fire protection system such as sprinklers becomes even more vital; similarly U.S. fire departments were called to over 6,000 fires per year at healthcare facilities, including hospitals, between 2006 and 2010.
Although the number of warehouse fires reported annually has decreased from over 4,500 in 1980 to just over 1,200 per year in 2011, average property losses associated with such fires are much higher than other commercial fire incidents. Loss of life and injury per 1,000 fires is significantly lower, however. In all such instances, fire sprinkler systems can significantly reduce property loss and injury/ deaths.