Fire Sprinkler Systems Mandatory for Disability Sector Homes
Fire sprinkler systems along with fire risk management are now mandatory for all housing funded by DHHS (Department of Health and Human Services) in Australia. It's a much welcome change with huge potential to save lives. In this case vulnerable lives as people with disability are at greater risk of dying in a fire given their lack of mobility and their often limited mental capacity. They are the vulnerable ones that often society forgets about but we have a duty of care to do all we can to protect them.
New Legislation for Fire Safety in Disability Housing
The new legislation applies to all residential facilities/ properties owned, operated, or funded by the Department of Health and Human Services. They must be provided with an AS 2118.4 sprinkler system. These must be regularly serviced and refurbished when malfunctioning. For more information on the legislation check out the Fire Risk Management Guidelines 2019.
Life Saving Value of New Build Fire Sprinkler Systems
New build fire sprinkler systems which are compliant to today’s standards have life saving value. Just consider the scenario - a group of 5 disabled people in wheelchairs are in a DHS funded home and a fire starts in one of the rooms when everyone is asleep. There is a carer on site who can be called for assistance. However the room will be fully engulfed in flames within 3 minutes not giving anyone much time to move within the building. The fire alarm will be activated upon one minute of ignition. There is no fire sprinkler system in place or at least one that adheres to today’s standards.
The fire service on average will take 7 minutes to respond to the call and a couple of minutes to set up. Therefore give or take a firefighter will be on site within 10 minutes of the original ignition. This leaves the carer the only person available to evacuate all 5 occupants and they would have less than 2 minutes to do this. Death would occur. It's a horrific situation that should never happen but unfortunately in the past when proper fire safety guidelines were not in place such situations did happen and resulted in loss of life. Now thankfully with better fire safety practices in place such situations can be better mitigated.
Raising Awareness about Fire Sprinkler Systems
The above scenario can be greatly minimized and mitigated with the installment and maintenance of fire sprinkler systems in disability sector homes. Just imagine the lives that would be saved along with reduced property damage! We are passionate and committed 100% to raising awareness across Australia about fire sprinkler systems and best fire safety practices. More and more states and territories across Australia are coming to realize the importance of having good fire safety protection practices in place in both residential and commercial properties.
Sinclair Fire can help you with the installation, maintenance and more of fire sprinkler systems in disability sector homes. Just Contact Trevor and his team today who are more than happy to help.