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The Aegis
Harford County

Fire sprinkler and smoke alarm save Fallston child’s life and home from significant damage

A fire sprinkler and smoke alarm are being credited with saving a child’s life while reducing significant property damage after a fire Saturday morning at a Fallston home.

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The Fallston Volunteer Fire Company and mutual-aid departments responded to a dwelling fire in the 2000 block of Arden Drive at 10:15 a.m. after the owner, who was outside at the time, heard a smoke alarm sounding. The owner went inside the house and removed her 7-year-old son, who was on the second floor of the home, and called 911, said Senior Deputy Oliver Alkire with the Office of the State Fire Marshal.

When fire crews arrived, they discovered a fire in the kitchen with one activated fire sprinkler.

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Fire investigators concluded the fire started in the kitchen, and was caused by an unattended candle, according to the Office of the State Fire Marshal. Investigators determined that the activation of only one automatic fire sprinkler prevented the fire from spreading from the kitchen into the remainder of the home.

“Residential fire sprinklers are proven to save lives, prevent injuries and protect property and valuables,” said Brian S. Geraci, state fire marshal. ”The best home fire safety practice is combining a smoke alarm, an escape plan, and a residential fire sprinkler. Today we saw the effects of this winning combination.”

Damages were estimated at $20,000, and no injuries were reported. Maryland requires a residential fire sprinkler in all new one- and two-family homes across the state, the state fire marshal said. Maryland law also prohibits local governments from weakening the sprinkler requirement in their jurisdiction’s building codes, he said.


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