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Code change could make fire sprinklers mandatory in NY

mark handler

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Code change could make fire sprinklers mandatory

http://www.wkbw.com/news/code-change-could-make-fire-sprinklers-mandatory

By: Jason Gruenauer

Feb 10, 2015

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) - A proposed change in New York State's building code would make it mandatory for all new homes to have built-in fire sprinkler systems.

The change would be done in the name of safety, but would also add cost to the price of the home. So is it worth it?

Within the thousands of pages of a potential new residential building code for New York is a soon-to-be voted on mandate that all new homes come equipped with a sprinkler system.

"If a customer wants a fire sprinkler system in their house, we are happy to put it into their house. We're opposed to a mandate. No different than we would be opposed to a mandate on granite counter tops, we wouldn't want that to be a mandate either. We are for consumer choice," William Tuyn, the President of the State Builder's Association, said Monday.

Tuyn says the cost of doing this, which can be more than ten thousand dollars, could have a negative impact on the new housing market.

"I expect sales to go down. There will be those people that are very price sensitive that would be unable to make the choice to build," he added.

But from a fire prevention standpoint, choice is not the primary concern.

"Do we have a choice when we go out and buy a car whether we want seat belts or not? Do we have a choice whether we want air bags or not?" Tom Rinaldi of the NYS Association of Fire Districts questioned.

The State Association of Fire Districts represents over 4,500 fire commissioners across the state, and fully supports the mandate.

"Number one to certainly save the lives of the residents that live in these homes. The second thing is to save the lives of our firefighters that respond to fires within these homes," Rinaldi added.

Residential fire sprinklers are mandatory in only two states, California and Maryland, and it appears that consumers here want to keep it that way. A 2014 Siena Poll found that 65 percent of New Yorkers questioned were against the mandate.

The code must be voted on and approved by the NYS Fire Prevention and Building Codes Council, who can then make changes once it's adopted. There was a meeting scheduled to vote this Wednesday, but that meeting has been postponed.
 

mtlogcabin

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"Number one to certainly save the lives of the residents that live in these homes.
Agree that is the purpose of a residential sprinkler system (13D)

The second thing is to save the lives of our firefighters that respond to fires within these homes,"
False

A residential sprinkler system is only required to have a 10 or 15 minute water supply based on the size of the home. It runs out of water before the FD even shows up. Will it help to slow the fire and maybe even extinguish it depending on the origin? Yes. Could this have lead to a saved firefighter? Maybe. However to continuously make the statement that one of the "purpose" a residential fire sprinkler is to save fire fighter lives is false and misleading. At most it may be a benefit to reduce fire fighter injurious and lives. in the a l
 

mn joe

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Minnesota now requires residential sprinklers for all new houses over 4500 sq.ft. That includes basements (finished or unfinished) and all floors. So a house footprint of 1500 sq ft with a basement and 2 stories gets sprinklered. I can't wait till the builders start crying in the spring.
 

tmurray

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Has there been studies to show that areas that are mandating sprinklers in single and two family dwellings are actually reducing the number of civilian deaths? I know this hasn't been a requirement for very long yet, but some areas adopted them a couple years ago...
 

cda

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tmurray said:
Has there been studies to show that areas that are mandating sprinklers in single and two family dwellings are actually reducing the number of civilian deaths? I know this hasn't been a requirement for very long yet, but some areas adopted them a couple years ago...
NO: 15 years

http://www.scottsdaleaz.gov/Assets/Public+Website/fire/15yearsprinklerexecstudy.pdf

The City of Scottsdale is widely recognized as a leader in built-in automatic sprinkler systems. In 1985, the City passed an ordinance requiring every commercial and multi-family building to be outfitted with a complete fire sprinkler system. The ordinance also requires that single-family residences, built after Jan. 1, 1986, be fully outfitted with an approved fire sprinkler system. Sprinkler systems are also required in major remodeling projects. These systems have been credited with saving a number of lives locally and across the nation.

http://www.homefiresprinkler.org/fire-department-scottsdale-report
 

mjesse

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tmurray said:
Has there been studies to show that areas that are mandating sprinklers in single and two family dwellings are actually reducing the number of civilian deaths? I know this hasn't been a requirement for very long yet, but some areas adopted them a couple years ago...
In Scottsdale, Arizona, a sprinkler ordinance was implemented on January 1, 1986. Ten years after the ordinance was passed, the Rural/Metro Fire Department published the Scottsdale Report. The study has now been updated to include five additional years of data.

More than 50% of the homes in Scottsdale (41,408 homes) are protected with fire sprinkler systems.

[h=3]Lives Saved[/h]in the 15 years there were 598 home fires. Of the 598 homefires, 49 were in single-family homes with fire sprinkler systems:

  • There were no deaths in sprinklered homes.
  • 13 people died in homes without sprinklers.
  • The lives of 13 people who would have likely died without sprinklers, were saved
http://www.homefiresprinkler.org/fire-department-15-year-data
 

cda

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Not sure how they determine if a life was saved??

people at home and got out??? people asleep and got out??

only 13 people were home in a 15 year period????

Total Working Fires in Sprinkled Buildings 199

* Types of Activations Commercial 102

Multifamily 48

Single Family 49

* Total Value of Complexes $767,334,000

* Total Structural Fire Loss for 199 Incidents $703,300

* Total Lives Saved 13

* Average Loss Per Sprinkled Incident $3,534

- Without Omega Failure at Joshua Tree Apartments $2,276

* Average Fire Loss @ Non-Sprinkled Structural Incidents $45,019

* Fires Controlled With Two or Less Sprinkler Heads (183/16) 92%
 

conarb

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T Murray:Back when we were arguing this before the fraudulent Minneapolis hearing I published statistics showing that there were several other communities of new homes built similar to Scottsdale at that time that also had no deaths from fires, I have no idea why anyone would believe statistics from the coalition of fire sprinkler manufacturers, there business is selling sprinklers. I also published the very thorough Canadian National Mortgage studies that showed that the money spent on sprinklers could have far better life saving effects spent elsewhere. View attachment 2536 Another relevant issue, we currently have a thread going on inspection bribes, at the time of the hearing several fire people here took bribes to go to Minneapolis and vote in the sprinkler code requirement, the government did issue FOIA subpoenas to some of them but somehow the whole thing got quashed, Uncle Bob researched Texas law and I researched California law and those payments accepted here were illegal in both states. It's my opinion that the bribes taken to vote in the sprinkler codes were worse than the bribes taken in the New York situation, they certainly cost society a lot more money.

View attachment 5591

View attachment 5591

/monthly_2010_06/572953d4ed8f6_amp99amp97amp110amp97amp100amp105amp97amp110amp45amp115amp116amp117amp100amp121amp46.jpg.a6a6d3e5a85b7bafb42d7a6f13f3ba16.jpg
 

mark handler

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cda said:
Not sure how they determine if a life was saved??people at home and got out??? people asleep and got out??

only 13 people were home in a 15 year period????
Number of deaths in non-sprinklered homes vs number of deaths in Sprinklered homes

No deaths in Sprinklered homes
 

mjesse

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conarb said:
I have no idea why anyone would believe statistics from the coalition of fire sprinkler manufacturers, there business is selling sprinklers.
I totally agree.

.

.

well, except for the spelling error
 

tmurray

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When the executive summary begins with this; The debate surrounding built-in fire protection for residential properties continues to rage on as intensely as ever more than 20 years after the general concept of residential sprinkler protection began to materialize and the preliminary testing occurred. The records are very clear showing how the use of automatic sprinkler systems in commercial and residential properties have saved thousands of lives and untold millions of dollars in fire loss. This type of proactive fire protection has dramatically reduced the suffering individuals and communities would have experienced as a result of the destructive power of fire. I get concerned that the white paper is not being presented from a neutral party.

There is no actual data in the paper. There is no process to describe how the conclusions were reached, for instance there is no description of how they determined the 13 lives saved. Was this conclusion reached anecdotally, or was there extensive fire modeling done? It also does not break down the number of lives saved in the same manner as the fire data is broken down; commercial, multi-residential and single family. The only data that it gives is the cost of construction lost at sprinklered vs. non-sprinklered events, but the author doesn't define any metrics here either, so we still have questions on how these numbers were developed. Ultimately this just shows what everyone already knows; sprinklers control fires until they can be extinguished and less damage occurs.

When I see reports like this I have a tendency to assume that the person that authored them is not incompetent, but is maliciously misconstruing and misreporting the facts to further their own agenda.
 

tmurray

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conarb said:
I have no idea why anyone would believe statistics from the coalition of fire sprinkler manufacturers, there business is selling sprinklers.
If their reports had raw study data, which every good white paper does, to back up their claims, I would believe them. Unfortunately, I am still waiting for a paper that does that. I'm a building inspector. If it does what you say it does, prove it.
 

conarb

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cda said:
Well when the government distributes the wealth evenly, fires will either go down or even out
Only if we get into pure Communism, not going to happen with our brand of Socialism/Fascism.

An interesting thing is happening in Oakland, radical left wing groups have grouped together to create a group center for all Communist, Socialist and Anarchist groups springing from the Occupy movement. The civil rights laws have taken away our right of freedom of association making private clubs a thing of the past since they all sought membership from their own ethnic/socioeconomic/racial/gender classes and many of the buildings are available. The Ligure Club was an old, now disbanded, "Northern Italian American" (they didn't admit Sicilians or other southern Italians) social club and they are in the process of trying to buy it under the anti-capitalist umbrella that they all unite under. Interestingly they want to comply with accessibility standards but not structural or fire requirements and are asking the city to waive those requirements, unbelievably the city is thinking about, maybe fearing they will start rioting if they don't give in.

\ said:
Keenan said the collectives got no-interest loans from supporters to pay for move-in costs and set up a cash reserve. So far they have been able to pool together membership fees and donations to pay rent. They are in the midst of an $80,000 fundraising drive to pay for needed work on the building such as making it wheelchair accessible. If they can buy the building, Keenan added, the collectives would team up with a land trust to keep it public in perpetuity.The endeavor's financial prospects will depend heavily on Oakland officials not requiring too many expensive upgrades, such as sprinklers, to get the building up to code as well as granting them a permit to rent out the space for events, Keenan said.

Margot Prado, a business development specialist for the city of Oakland, said she was optimistic that bureaucracy wouldn't be an obstacle. "It's a kind of collaborative and innovative environment, and that's what we're looking to have here in Oakland," she said.¹
Since disability activist groups are affilitated with LIBCOM they want disability access, but I have to wonder if they even know what it implies, I bet they think wheelchair access in the only component and are in for a rude awakening even if the city waives structural and fire requirements.

¹ http://www.contracostatimes.com/my-town/ci_27246770/spirit-occupy-lives-new-super-collective
 
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