On Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2014, the University of New Haven hosted the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition for a “live burn” demonstration in its parking lot.
Orange Live ran this story at the time, but since the message is timeless and the holidays traditionally bring many accidental residential fires, we thought it was a good time to post it again.
About the Coalition
The Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition (HFSC) was formed in 1996 in response to the tremendous need to inform the public about the life-saving value of home fire sprinkler protection. HFSC is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization and the leading resource for independent, noncommercial information about residential fire sprinklers. HFSC offers educational material with details about installed home fire sprinkler systems, how they work, why they provide affordable protection and answers to common myths and misconceptions about their operation. These materials are available upon request.
Wednesday’s demonstration, which had been planned well in advance, took place about 18 hours after Hartford firefighter Kevin Bell, 48, a 6-year veteran of the department died in a house fire on Tuesday evening. Three other firefighters also were injured fighting the blaze.
Had the two story home on Blue Hills Avenue been equipped with a sprinkler system, Bell most likely would still be alive.
The University of New Haven has an active Fire Science Department, whose students assisted in the event, building two identical wooden boxes using the HFSC specs down to the amount and placement of screws with materials donated by the Derby Home Depot.
Each box was set up like a bedroom with the same items: bed, nightstand, curtains, computer monitor, plastic toys, carpet and smoke detector.
One “room” was equipped with a single sprinkler head, the other was not.
A large time keepers clock was set up on a table in between the two boxes and one by one, the non-sprinklered room first, they were set on fire in the same spot (behind the bed).
Click HERE for a Video of the event.
24 seconds fire catches on curtains, smoke detector activates
50 seconds fire rolls across ceiling temperatures increase to unbearable limit
1:40 Flashover — you can’t escape this fire
2:00 extinguished with water from fire department
19 seconds smoke detector goes off
24 seconds curtain on fire
47 seconds, heat rises, sprinkler activates, fire is out
Minimal water damage
HERE is a video of Christmas Tree fires in the same side-by-side type of scenario