Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Home Fire Sprinklers Score 'A' In Cost-benefit Study

Date:
October 15, 2007
Source:
National Institute of Standards and Technology
Summary:
Sometimes life-saving technologies seem beyond the reach of the average person. If you put residential fire sprinklers in that category, think again. Economists ran the numbers. Their benefit-cost analysis found that for new home construction, a multipurpose network sprinkler system that connects to a house's regular water supply and piping makes good economic sense.

Photo of sprinkler head.
Credit: NIST

Sometimes life-saving technologies seem beyond the reach of the average person. If you put residential fire sprinklers in that category, think again. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) economists ran the numbers. Their benefit-cost analysis found that for new home construction, a multipurpose network sprinkler system that connects to a house's regular water supply and piping makes good economic sense.

NIST's Benefit-Cost Analysis of Residential Fire Sprinkler Systems report, released last month, examines data from 2002 to 2005 to value the economic performance of a residential "wet-pipe"  fire sprinkler system. The additional economic benefits from installation of a multipurpose network sprinkler system (the least costly wet-pipe system available) are estimated for three types of newly constructed single-family houses that are also equipped with smoke detectors. The study builds on a prior cost analysis developed by NIST‘―s Building and Fire Research Laboratory and offers a current analysis of the economics of residential fire sprinkler technology.

According to NIST, the cost in 2005 dollars for adding a multipurpose network sprinkler system to a house under construction was approximately $2,075 for a 3,338-square-foot colonial-style house, $1,895 for a 2,257-square-foot townhouse and $829 for a 1,171-square-foot ranch house. However when a house fire occurs, the estimated benefits of a residential fire sprinkler system include a 100 percent reduction in civilian fatalities and a 57 percent reduction in civilian injuries, a 32 percent reduction of both direct property damage (property losses that would not be covered by insurance) and indirect property costs (fire-related expenses such as temporary shelter, missed work, extra food costs, legal expenses, transportation, emotional counseling and childcare). Houses with sprinklers, in addition to smoke alarms, also received an 8 percent reduction in homeowner insurance premiums, over houses only equipped with smoke alarms.

After subtracting installation costs and weighting the benefits by the odds that a house would catch on fire, NIST economists concluded that, depending on assumptions, the net gain from installing a sprinkler system (in 2005 dollars) would vary between $704 and $4,801 for the colonial-style house, between $884 and $4,981 for the townhouse, and between $1,950 and $6,048 for the ranch-style house, over the 30-year study period. In all cases examined, the researchers found that the data supported the finding that multipurpose network residential fire sprinkler systems are cost-effective.

The United States Fire Administration (USFA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), funded the research.

Benefit-Cost Analysis of Residential Fire Sprinkler Systems (NISTIR 7451) by David T. Butry, M. Hayden Brown and Sieglinde K. Fuller.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by National Institute of Standards and Technology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

National Institute of Standards and Technology. "Home Fire Sprinklers Score 'A' In Cost-benefit Study." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 October 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071011154124.htm>.
National Institute of Standards and Technology. (2007, October 15). Home Fire Sprinklers Score 'A' In Cost-benefit Study. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071011154124.htm
National Institute of Standards and Technology. "Home Fire Sprinklers Score 'A' In Cost-benefit Study." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071011154124.htm (accessed September 23, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Company Copies Keys From Photos

Company Copies Keys From Photos

Newsy (Sep. 22, 2014) — A new company allows customers to make copies of keys by simply uploading a couple of photos. But could it also be great for thieves? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Rockefeller Oil Heirs Switching To Clean Energy

Rockefeller Oil Heirs Switching To Clean Energy

Newsy (Sep. 22, 2014) — The Rockefellers — heirs to an oil fortune that made the family name a symbol of American wealth — are switching from fossil fuels to clean energy. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: SpaceX Rocket Carries 3-D Printer to Space

Raw: SpaceX Rocket Carries 3-D Printer to Space

AP (Sep. 22, 2014) — A SpaceX Rocket launched from Cape Canaveral, carrying a custom-built 3-D printer into space. NASA envisions astronauts one day using the printer to make their own spare parts. (Sept. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Inside London's Massive Sewer Tunnel Project

Inside London's Massive Sewer Tunnel Project

AP (Sep. 22, 2014) — Billions of dollars are being spent on a massive super sewer to take away London's vast output of waste, which is endangering the River Thames. (Sept. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins