CLWYD South AM Ken Skates is using National Fire Sprinkler Week (Feb 3-7) to highlight the impact the life-saving devices have in protecting homes and businesses across Wales.
Under the terms of the Domestic Fire Safety (Wales) Measure 2011, a backbench piece of legislation steered through by Vale of Clwyd AM Ann Jones, all new and converted domestic properties in Wales will have to have sprinklers installed as standard from January 2016.
Labour Assembly Member Mr Skates said: “Accidental fires in homes across Wales caused 13 deaths during 2011/12, as well as causing devastating damage to many homes, families and communities. The Fire and Rescue Service in North Wales does a fantastic job in protecting the people of Clwyd South and the whole region against fires, but there is only so much that they can do in the worst cases.
“The installation of fire sprinkler systems will go a long way towards minimising the risk of fire devastation. Sprinklers have a track proven record to help save lives of families and fire-fighters. Sprinklers are also excellent for the environment – using much less water than a fire hose. I’m very pleased that Wales will be leading the way in protecting and preventing homes from fire.”
Statistics show that widespread use of sprinklers could save up to 96% of the 5.6 billion litres of water used annually in the UK to fight large fires – this is equivalent to a three-month water supply for the population of a city the size of Leeds.
The policy is widely supported by Chief Fire Officers from across the UK as it will result in fewer fire deaths and minimise some of the enormous danger fire-fighters put themselves in.