Having a good fire protection system is essential for many businesses. Every year about 150 fires that result in the deaths of 15 people are attributable to fires in hotels and motels. These deadly fires cause more than $76 million in damages. Despite the fact that early warming systems are at least able to reduce number of deaths and injuries from fires in businesses, not all companies have a fire sprinkler installation done at their business.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has reported that no fire in an area with a fire sprinkler installation already done has causes more than two people to lose their lives. The NFPA recommends having a fire sprinkler system installation done to prevent the loss of life, injuries and property damage.
Many myths about fire sprinkler systems persist. These systems have been used in businesses and home for over a hundred years. They are tested and true ways to protect property from fire and water damage. This may be the reason so many companies and business delay have their fire sprinkler system installation taken care of.
Common misconceptions and myths about fire sprinkler systems:
“When one sprinkler head goes off, they all do.” Each fire sprinkler head is set to independently register heat and go off as needed. This limits the amount of water sprayed to areas that are actually on fire. The temperature around the head has to go above 155 degrees Fahrenheit to go off. More than 80% of fires can be extinguished with two sprinkler heads.
“The water from the fire sprinkler system will do more damage that the fire.” If you do not have a fire sprinkler system in your business and the fire cannot be contained this way, the fire department will be forced to use their hoses which release a lot more damaging water than your fire sprinkler system. They pump out about between 80 and 125 gallons of water a minute. A well done fire sprinkler installation that is regularly maintained will only put out between eight and 24 gallons a minute. The Fire Department will do a lot more damage to your structure than your sprinkler system.
“I do not need to test and inspect my system after the fire sprinkler installation has been done.” Wrong. They need to be inspected regularly. For chemical suspension systems, a common cause of failure is the lack of proper maintenance. It is incredibly important to keep your maintenance up and your inspections current on all of your fire sprinklers. This is the best thing to keep your business, customers and clients and employees.
“Our smoke detector is enough.” Fire protection systems are not complete without a fire suppression component. Non-chemical systems can have a success rate of over 96% in bigger commercial areas that make use of large ovens. This means that you need a smoke detector and a fire suppression system to work in tandem to really protect your property. The fire suppression is a very important part of your fire protection system.
“The fire sprinkler system installation is too expensive for my business.” You can talk to your insurance carrier about reducing the charge associated with the fire sprinkler installation and maintenance. Your insurance may require you to have some fire sprinkler installed and maintained to cover you. There might also be state and local rules and regulations that require you to do this. One fire can wipe out your entire business and it is not always easy to rebuild.
The drawbacks to not having a fire sprinkler installation done greatly outweigh the costs of the system and maintenance. If you do experience a fire, your property losses may be the least of your concerns and you could endanger the lives of your clients, customers and staff. As an employer, it is your job to have a plan in place to make your workplace as safe as possible. This also includes a fire evacuation plan, though only 35% of companies surveyed reported that they had one. You should include that part in any complete fire prevention and suppression plan you develop for your business.