Friday, October 23, 2009

Sprinklers in your living room

The forces of fire safety are pushing to require sprinklers in New Hampshire residential construction. If the firemen get their way, new homes will have tasteful chrome sprinkler heads sticking out of the ceilings. Homey they are.
Pricey too. This "safety" requirement will add 4 or 5 thousand dollars to the price of new homes or condo's. Just the thing to make affordable housing less affordable.
The insurance companies are maintaining a low profile on this issue. They figure the increased claims for water damage will make up from any savings in fire losses. Sprinkler systems will discharge accidently. I have a vivid memory of the time the sprinklers went off in the old Waltham Watch factory, right in the computer room. It was a tropical downpour, only indoors. We saved the computers by whipping big plastic trash bags down over the equipment racks. This could happen in your new living room.

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