Proposal Could Require In-Home Sprinkler Systems - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Proposal Could Require In-Home Sprinkler Systems

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by Adam Ghassemi

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Proposed regulations in one mid-state county could mean some new construction homes must have sprinkler systems.

Helen Hood moved to the Cascade Falls subdivision near the Rutherford / Wilson County line with her husband five-years ago. That's when she learned their home didn't only come with sprinklers, they didn't have a choice.

"It gave a sense of peace that if we did have a fire that we would have more control over how much of our house would be saved," Hood said.

Hydrants here are visible, but according to officials not strong enough to put out fires.

Rutherford County Fire Chief Larry Farley said responding to fires in areas with poor water lines could leave a structure a total loss.

"They won't have enough water volume or enough pressure," Farley said Tuesday. "We don't want to arrive on a scene and realize that we've got a working structure fire and we don't have a water supply."

That's why Farley said he supports requiring any new homes built in subdivisions or developments in areas like Cascade Falls to have systems.

Monday night, the Rutherford County Regional Planning Commission approved new subdivision regulations, but forwarded a sprinkler portion of the proposal for a full commission vote.

Farley said the sprinklers won't only save a home, but also give people inside much more of a chance to survive.

"If you do have smoke in that house that water flowing will wash a lot of those toxins out of that smoke," he said.

That's why Hood is glad she not only has fire alarms, but also sprinklers to protect her family regardless of the expense on the front end.

"I think the homeowner's insurance discount on that will more than pay for itself so I think it's worth every penny," she went on to say.

An average in-home sprinkler system could cost at least a few thousand dollars.

Farley said some home builders have been upset by the proposal. No one was available Tuesday from the Rutherford County Home Builders Association.

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