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Fire Sprinkler Ordinances: An Important Lesson in Grassroots Efforts

Courtesy of NFPA’s “Fire Sprinkler Initiative” blog:

This may come as a surprise to fire sprinkler opponents, but the website Grassroots Change has named the home fire sprinkler movement “one of the most successful public safety efforts” in America within the past three decades. According to a recent study in the American Journal of Public Health, this grassroots movement has successfully promoted more than 360 local ordinances mandating fire sprinklers in all new residential construction, including one- and two-family homes, since 1978. Successful, indeed.

The recent Grassroots Change website article backs its statement by highlighting an impressive effort taking place in Mesa, Arizona. While the state prohibits local jurisdictions from requiring sprinklers in homes, the city has been using specialized grants to install fire sprinklers in low- and moderate-income housing. This approach has not only increased public safety, but has also energized community development.

“To date, Mesa’s initiative has resulted in the installation of sprinklers in 29 single-family and 29 multifamily homes,” states the article. “Not only will these investments save lives and property, they have created or saved jobs in the construction industry.”

Learn more about Mesa’s efforts.

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