8th May 2012
Leicestershire Fire and Rescue has called on all businesses to protect their premises by installing a sprinkler system, which is regularly maintained.
The warning follows an incident where fire crews tackled a blaze, which had spread through a number of business units in the centre of Leicester on Saturday 21 April. The building was originally built as a knitwear factory but has since been split into several business units. The area where the fire originated was currently unoccupied and was not protected by a sprinkler system.
Other units within the building were protected by sprinkler systems that are fed by water from the town mains system, but they were not triggered because fire crews were able to prevent the spread of fire into these units.
Group Manager Alan Fawkner stated: “The unit affected by the fire was originally protected by a sprinkler system of a similar type operating off the same water supply. However, this was de-commissioned sometime last year following theft of copper cables from the substation used to supply power to the unit.
“Had the unit still been protected by the system, this would likely have helped reduce the growth of fire, together with the rate that it spread.”
There is currently no legal requirement for commercial buildings such as this to install sprinkler systems, but if they are installed there is evidence to suggest that disruption can be greatly reduced.
For more information about how you can help you protect your business from fire visit www.leicestershire-fire.gov.uk/safety/business.
Date: 21st May 2013