In an emergency call 999

General enquiries call 0300 330 1000

Sprinkler system saves man's life

August 25 2020

A man has had a lucky escape from a fire at his sheltered housing flat in Tamworth thanks to a sprinkler system fitted after a blaze at the property five years ago.

Had it not been for the fire sprinklers, which were fitted retrospectively in 2016, there was the potential for more than 20 lives to have been at risk, as well as severe damage to the building.

SFRS Protect Manager, Stuart Ruckledge

Firefighters from Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) were called to reports of flat fire at Russell House on Bancroft at 4am this morning. A 47-year-old man was rescued and was checked over by the ambulance service as a precaution.

Following a previous fire at Russell House in 2015, where the property was severely damaged, SFRS supported and advised housing association Clarion Housing Group to fit a sprinkler system retrospectively. It was fitted in 2016 and residents moved back into their homes, safe in the knowledge that the sprinkler system gave them extra protection should another fire occur.

SFRS Protect Manager, Stuart Ruckledge, said: “Thankfully no one was hurt during the fire at Russell House this morning. Following the previous fire in 2015, SFRS worked closely with the housing association to put measures in place to prevent such a situation occurring in the future.

“Had it not been for the fire sprinklers, which were fitted retrospectively in 2016, there was the potential for more than 20 lives to have been at risk, as well as severe damage to the building.

“Sprinkler systems are heat activated, which means only the heads in the area affected by fire will operate and spray water. By controlling the fire in the early stages, the fire does not have chance to spread, and over 90 per cent of fires are controlled or extinguished by just a single sprinkler head.”