Fire Sprinklers Statistics in Commercial Property

  July 11, 2011

In the May 2011 National Fire Protection Association report entitled U.S. Experience with Sprinklers, one trend is the steady rise of automatic fire extinguishing equipment across all property types. The term "automatic fire extinguishing equipment" is misleading, says the report, "because most such equipment is designed to control fires and not to fully extinguish them."

In educational property, automatic fire extinguishing equipment was reported in 39 percent of fires between 2005 and 2009, compared to 24 percent between 1994 and 1998. In office space, it rose from 25 percent to 33 percent in the same time periods. In health care, it went from 58 percent to 64 percent.

In a few property types for fires reported between 2005 and 2009, fire sprinkler systems were reported in about half of them. These include dorms and barracks (51 percent), prisons and jails (50 percent), hotels and motels (49 percent), and manufacturing facilities (48 percent).

In every other property type with reported fires, sprinklers were not reported in at least 60 percent of the fires. Office fires between 2005 and 2009 reported a 30 percent sprinkler presence and educational properties reported a 34 percent presence, which makes up the majority of the automatic fire extinguishing equipment presence reported in both property types.

Find a copy of the U.S. Experience with Sprinklers report at


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