The 27th fire death in Massachusetts this year was a 64-year-old man who succumbed to a home fire. Highlighting the cause--improper disposal of smoking materials--was just as important to the local fire service as was noting the solution for eliminating home fire deaths.
When asked for comment about the fire from a reporter, Massachusetts Fire Sprinkler Coalition Chair Mary Regan took a stance on sprinklers. "Fires are always a terrible experience, but they are even worse when someone dies," said Regan, fire chief of the Westfield, Massachusetts, Fire Department, in an article that appeared on Mass Live. "I have been a strong advocate to require all new homes to be built with fire sprinklers, so we can build a future where these tragedies are less likely to happen."
Regan isn't the only one in Massachusetts promoting sprinklers to the public. Massachusetts State Fire Marshal Stephen Coan makes sure news releases from his office, personal op-eds, and his statements at news conferences mention fire sprinklers. “I have responded to hundreds of fatal fires in my state, and it’s hard to rationalize how decisions [on mandatory home fire sprinkler installations] can be based strictly on cost while not recognizing the effect fire has on our society,” said Coan in an interview with NFPA Journal.
Use these "talking home fire sprinklers" tips from the Fire Sprinkler Initiative to become an effective advocate in your community.