Fight the Cold and Flu

By: Michael Appleman, M.S.


What if I told you it is possible to have your very own live-in firefighter - one that works twenty-four hours a day and requires no attention from you? Wouldn't this be a great way to achieve fire protection? Well, it is possible, and hopefully, we will all have our very own firefighter living with us in the near future.

The "firefighter" I'm talking about is a home fire sprinkler system. This firefighter can extinguish a fire before it gets out of control and spreads to other rooms. This firefighter's ability to save lives and prevent injuries is staggering, and the peace of mind it will give you is priceless. Fire sprinklers offer the best fire protection possible - just like having your very own firefighter living with you.

Most of us have seen fire sprinklers in buildings and know that they aren't very attractive. These are commercial sprinkler systems, which are not manufactured or installed for decorative purposes. Luckily, though, newer technology has led to more attractive, unobtrusive sprinkler designs for residential use.

The push for home sprinkler systems is still in the beginning stages, and a great amount of awareness has to be established before this life-saving firefighter becomes a reality in every residence. However, there are companies that do offer home sprinkler systems, and it is worth looking into. Especially if you are building a new house, you should definitely look into having a sprinkler system installed. In fact, the installation only amounts to a little over one percent of the total construction costs. Installing a sprinkler system into a finished house may cost as low as $2.50 to $5.00 per square foot. If you don't know where to go to get more information about installing a residential sprinkler system, it is as easy as picking up the phone or surfing the Internet in the leisure of your own home. A few suggestions are to look at the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition at or the Fire Sprinkler Network at You can also contact your local fire station for suggestions or find listings for distributors in the telephone book.

As a burn survivor, I can't stress enough how fast a fire can burn out of control. Fire burns faster than we are able to react to it, let alone put it out. The heat sensitive elements used in sprinkler systems can detect the heat from a fire and extinguish it in its early stages.

We have to take our personal safety seriously. If it isn't mandatory for builders to install sprinkler systems in new homes, then it is up to homebuyers to insist on having sprinklers installed. Believe me: the extra money will be well spent on the safety and peace of mind that sprinklers offer. Plus, home insurance rates usually go down, because sprinklers help reduce fire damage.

Fires destroy lives and homes. Isn't the extra expense involved in protection well worth the cost?