Wednesday, January 5, 2011

House Fire You Did Not Hear About

Yesterday, we responded to a fire in a kitchen. Some kids in the home had decided to cook french fries and were heating the cooking oil. At some point, the pan was left unattended and a fire started. As a side note, cooking related fires are the number one cause of fires here in the County as well as across the country.

Certainly the above is a recipe (no pun intended) for a potential large fire, loss of life, and potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars in property loss. No question a fire event that would make the news. So why did you not hear about this fire involving kids yesterday?

Read a part of the report to understand: Fire extinguished by residential sprinkler prior to arrival of Fire Department. Held E722 and RS722 to remove light smoke. No injuries, $2500 in loss.

Not only do home fire sprinklers dramatically reduce the risk of home fire deaths, they also decrease fire damage by as much as two-thirds when compared to homes without sprinklers.*  It is like having fire fighters living inside your home (see video above from Fresno, CA Fire Department)!

Sprinklers and smoke alarms together cut your risk of dying in a home fire 82% relative to having neither – a savings of thousands of lives a year (from NFPA).

While all new homes in the County are required to have this vital life safety tool installed, the vast majority of Montgomery County homes do not have sprinklers protecting them. There is a program in the County that will allow you a one time tax credit of up to 50% of your county property tax on dwellings when you retro-fit your home with fire sprinklers.

Go here to learn more: Learn How To Reduce Your Property Tax Bill By 50%



Anonymous said...

I'm so happy to read that no one was injured in the home with a sprinkler system. The 'fire sprinkler video' was hilarious!

Rocky Lopes said...

I believe ... absolutely ... in the protection afforded to my home by the automatic residential fire sprinklers that I had installed when my house was built in Silver Spring in 1998.

I had to negotiate with my house's builder to allow me to subcontract the work by Livingston Fire Protection. The builder resisted, and stated many of those fables about sprinklers all going off at the same time (or leaking) and causing a lot of water damage.

The builder's resistance was overcome when I provided lots of data from the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition and the NFPA. What the builder saw in the movies and on some TV shows was all poppycock, and I had the opportunity to "educate" such that the builder began offering sprinklers long before a tax credit was available, or the law requiring them in new construction was passed.

Words cannot describe the peace of mind that I feel in knowing that my home is protected by vigilant sentries at all hours of the day and night... when we are not at home, and even when we are: I know we are safe and that should a fire occur, damage will be significantly less.

I even had a flow sensor installed by my alarm company so that if there is flow in the sprinkler system, the alarm company will get a signal and will notify the fire department. That's the fastest way for us to have notification made if we are not at home should a fire occur that sets off a sprinkler.

Thank you for posting this message. I believe .... I wish others did, and it's regretful that so many homes are not protected by a system that affords such peace-of-mind and a 24/7 safeguard.

Best wishes from a protected Montgomery County homeowner,


billd said...

Thanks Rocky!!!!