No matter where we live or what business we choose to create our livelihood, there is always one particular disaster lurking in the shadows waiting for us to make a mistake: Fire. No home or business is 100% immune from fire danger, be it from dry weather and strong winds, a grease fire that got out of hand, a poorly put-out campfire, or even a random lit cigarette. While there is no way to guarantee your home or business will never be affected by a fire, there are many ways to ensure a fire will not completely devastate your property or severely affect the lives of your family and employees. One crucial component of an effective fire suppression system is fire sprinklers.
Why Do I Need a Fire Sprinkler System?
The U.S. Fire Administration estimates that in 2019 there were 110,900 nonresidential building fires. of those fires, 29.9% were from cooking, 11.5% from general carelessness, 10.8% were intentional, and 7.3% occurred due to electrical malfunctions. Further, in 2019, there were 354,400 residential building fires, where 50.2% of those fires stemmed from cooking incidents. These 2019 fires caused over 3,700 fatalities and over 16,600 injuries. Those are devastating numbers affecting even more lives through the loss of loved ones. Fatalities and injuries aside, business owners and homeowners saw losses in excess of $14 billion.
While the most obvious component of a fire suppression system is a smoke detector, perhaps the most beneficial component in protecting your property from utter devastation by fire is a fire sprinkler system. There is no doubt that a smoke detector is essential to saving lives in a fire emergency. However, fire sprinklers get a head start on putting out the fire before emergency services arrive. These precious moments are crucial in reducing the risk faced by family, employees, and property. Many times, fire sprinkler systems are able to fully extinguish a fire without the need of emergency services. Often times they are able to reduce the fire in a certain area to allow family members or employees a safe route out of the building. fire sprinklers also reduce the amount of smoke in the air which may limit injuries, or even deaths, due to smoke inhalation.
How Do They Work?
Fire sprinkler systems are installed by professional technicians who are usually industry certified to ensure proper installation. These systems are created through a series of pipes that may be installed in ceilings and walls throughout the premises. Attached to the pipes are individual sprinkler heads which work to protect the area near the head itself. The purpose of these systems is to ensure they are ready to deploy when its sensors detect a fire. Once a fire is detected, the water, which is stored under pressure in the pipes, is deployed to suppress the fire. Many times, fire sprinkler systems will fully suppress a fire in the early moments prior to the arrival of emergency services. the benefit of this is the reduction of not only property destruction, but also the saving of lives.
Mandatory Maintenance and Inspections
As fire has been a hazard to humans since the days of Prometheus, it is unsurprising that there are national, state, and municipal rules and regulations which must be adhered to in order to ensure fire sprinkler systems are working at optimal levels. This is one aspect of your fire suppression system that is dangerous to neglect. The National Fire Protection Association has issued standards for sprinkler systems covering not only installation but also maintenance and mandatory inspections.
One key concern with fire sprinkler systems is backflow. Backflow occurs when the water sitting in the pipes for the sprinkler system flows backward into the drinking water, rendering a community’s potable water non-potable. This contamination may cause an emergency situation affecting hundreds to thousands of lives that are easily controlled through proper maintenance and inspections. The NFPA requires an annual inspection for backflow issues and every fire sprinkler system. Regular maintenance by certified technicians through reputable companies, like A Total Solution, and sure all maintenance, repairs, and inspections our meeting the NFPA standards as well as all state and municipal requirements.
Fire Suppression Support from ATS
The first step to ensuring your business and home are protected from fire is the contract with a company that has the experience, know-how, and certifications to properly install, maintain, test, and inspect all aspects of your fire suppression system. ATS has spent the last several decades providing top-notch service utilizing industry-leading materials to ensure Tampa Bay businesses are protected from the devastating effects of fire. As regulations and ordinances change over the years, ATS is able to retrofit older existing systems to bring them up to code. ATS is proud to provide these services while working with home and business owners to ensure they are working within your budget.
Don’t let your home or business go up in smoke! A Total Solution is here to ensure your fire sprinkler system is up to code and working at optimal levels. Contact us now for a free business fire protection assessment.