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Automatic sprinkler systems have a remarkable performance record. The U.S. Department of Energy reports that more than 99% of all fires experienced in their sprinklered buildings were controlled or extinguished by the automatic sprinklers. In 90% of those fires only one or two sprinkler heads actually fused. When sprinkler systems do fail to control a fire, it can usually be traced to human error.
One of the leading causes is lack of an effective inspection and testing program to detect problems that may cause failure before a fire occurs. Another leading reason for sprinkler failure is lack of management support or involvement in the maintenance program. All too often the inspection and testing program detects and reports a problem, but management fails to follow-up to assure the deficiency is corrected.
© Hughes Associates,Inc. 2012