The sprinklers, retrofitted through collaboration between Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) and housing association Midland Heart, is the latest achievement in the service’s Community Sprinkler Project aimed at making high-rise properties safer by protecting residents from domestic fires.
Fire sprinklers are widely recognised as the single-most effective method for stopping the spread of fires in their early stages and the work to enhance the safety of flats at Charnwood House on Dimbles Lane has now reached completion.
Research by the National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) and the National Fire Sprinkler Network (NFSN) found that sprinkler systems operate on 94% of occasions so are very reliable and when they do operate they extinguish or contain the fire on 99% of occasions. The result is sprinklers reduce injuries by at least 80%, reduce property damage by 90% and substantially reduce damage to the environment from fire.
To mark National Sprinkler Week, which runs from 16 to 22 May and aims to raise awareness of the benefits of sprinkler systems, representatives from Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service and Midland Heart, met with residents who praised the project.
Ashley Mather, Fire Engineering and Suppression Lead for Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service, who has worked on the project, said: “Our Community Sprinkler Project aims to have sprinklers fitted in all in all residential buildings of five floors or more in Staffordshire by 2026. We are well on the way to achieving this goal and our fire engineers are working with the owners of premises housing those most at risk in case of fire to promote the use of sprinklers.
“We are incredibly proud to support Midland Heart in ensuring the safety of their tenants through their on-going commitment to fire safety. The sprinklers will help to keep people safe in this building for decades to come and it’s great to see this project being so well-received by the residents of Charnwood House.”
Following the successful collaboration, a further three sites in Staffordshire have also had sprinklers installed: School Court in Hednesford, Camoys Court in Stoke-on-Trent, and Bluebell Court in Lichfield, with work also proposed at Andrews House in Lichfield.
Waseem Butt, Director of Building Safety at Midland Heart, said: “The safety of our customers is at the heart of everything we do. We’re thrilled that the option of having sprinklers installed has been so well-received by residents of Charnwood House, who have been so positive in engaging with us and the fire service.
“The benefits of having the sprinklers installed further protects our residents from fire and supports our mission to enable our customers to live independently.”
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