Warehouse owners, their agents and brokers, will be interested in a new, more effective fire protection approach recently unveiled by FM Global, one of the world’s largest commercial and industrial property insurers. The company believes that its new approach could reduce businesses’ loss prevention-costs by millions of dollars. Using current fire protection technology, the solution enables facility owners to use fewer sprinklers and lower-capacity water systems.

“Fire is the leading cause of commercial property damage,” noted Ronnie Gibson, vice president and chief engineer with FM Global. “This new in-rack sprinkler design option for warehouses can minimize our clients’ costs as well as their risk.”

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For example, in a 500,000-square foot warehouse with an 80-foot ceiling height, the cost of installing sprinklers, pumps and water tanks could be cut from approximately $4.3 million to as little as $2.6 million, according to contractor estimates. Savings are likely to vary based on location, but they are still estimated to be significant.

In addition to cost savings, the new design also is more environmentally friendly, FM Global said in a statement. It would allow companies to protect their highest-hazard commodities, such as expanded plastic, using less than half the water volume previously needed. Furthermore, in the event of a fire, warehouse owners would likely sustain less water and smoke damage, because the fire would be controlled or suppressed more quickly. Businesses also may see a smaller environmental impact in smoke and water runoff.

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The following infographic, courtesy of FM Global illustrates the new in-rack sprinkler design. For more information, see Data Sheet 8-9, available online (registration required).