Fire Sprinkler Saves Life

9 years 8 months 3 weeks ago January 03, 2007 Jan 3, 2007 Wednesday, January 03 2007 Wednesday, January 03, 2007 10:18:19 AM CST in News

"I can't stress the importance of having a sprinkler system. It saved this man's life and everyone else's in the building," said property manager Cindy Negron.

The Columbia City Council was scheduled to vote Tuesday night whether to require all residences, except single-family homes or duplexes, to have automatic fire sprinklers, even if residents might not notice them.

"Most likely, people don't know that fire sprinkler systems are in buildings," said Steven Sapp of the Columbia Fire Department.

"I don't know if we have one here or not. I'm assuming not, because I haven't seen one," said Jessica Tomberlin, a University of Missouri student.

Now, the city wants to require sprinklers in MU fraternity and sorority houses.

"I know that it's really common for us to just leave our [hair] straighteners on, [and] curling irons," admitted Tomberlin, who used to live in a sorority house. "And that can start a fire really easily and nobody really thinks about it."

Critics of the proposal cited high installation costs and water damage from sprinklers, but firefighters said sprinklers cut damage costs by two-thirds compared to structures without sprinklers.

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