The title of this article is, “ABC Uses Fire Tragedy to Push More Government Regulation.” The tragedy the article speaks of is the furniture warehouse fire in South Carolina. I think the author needs to go back and do a little more research. First of all, it was the fire department who brought up the fact that fire sprinklers would have prevented the loss of life and the tragic outcome of Monday’s fire. Would ABC have reported the story had the fire chief not touted the benefit and need for sprinklers? My hunch is no.
The topic of the article digresses into residential requirements. Comparing commercial and residential real estate, in terms of fire sprinkler systems, is like comparing apples and oranges. What a shameful attempt to push the agenda of the NAHB.
The author also takes a shot at the NFSA,
In fact, the NSFA is an agenda-driven organization interested in promoting the sales of sprinkler systems. According to the organization ‘Mission Statement’ on its Web site, the purpose of the NFSA is ‘to create a market for the widespread acceptance of competently installed automatic fire sprinkler systems in both new and existing construction, from homes to high-rise.’”
Of course, I won’t deny that the NFSA is an agenda driven organization. They promote fire sprinkler systems because they believe in the fact that fire sprinklers have proven themselves to protect life and property. Though, when you go to the website (link in the side bar under “Sprinkler Organizations”) do them a favor and peruse it and find out for yourselves that the focus of their mission is slanted more heavily toward making sure that sprinkler systems are “competently installed.” The training and education the NFSA provides to those who design and install sprinkler systems is second to none.
Finally, I would like explain the, “create a market” portion of the mission statement. Sure the NFSA promotes sprinkler requirements. Just as does the AFSA and just as the NBFAA (National Burglar and Fire Alarm Association), I’m sure, promoted a requirement for smoke alarms back in the day. The thing to take away from this is that the NFSA, the AFSA, and the NBFAA cannot really “create” the market, they can promote the hell out of it. But “creation of the market” lies, for the most part, in the hands of the city code officials and fire department personell around the nation who are allowed to vote on such requirements in the codes.
But the NFSA doesn’t need me to defend them. Their reputation in the industry and the people who work and dedicate their lives to the mission of fire sprinkler systems is, quite frankly, enough.