Sprinklers help extinguish small fire at Trump Tower
Sprinkler advocate contrasts outcome with Hancock fire, without sprinklers, that caused injuries
19-Feb-16 A trash compactor on the 50th floor of Trump International Hotel & Tower was the source of a small fire on Thursday.
At about 9 a.m., the compactor produced smoke and enough heat to activate sprinklers on the residential floor, which held the fire at bay, according to Chicago Fire Department.
CPD personnel extinguished the fire and made sure smoke had not accumulated elsewhere in the 98-story building. They also helped mop up water and keep it away from elevator shafts.
There were no injuries, no evacuation, and no significant damage, in contrast with a fire last November at John Hancock Center one mile north of Trump Tower that also started in a condo unit on the 50th floor.
That fire was caused by a candle. It injured five people and took an hour and a half to extinguish. The residential floors of the 100-story building, finished in 1969, do not have fire sprinklers.
The executive director of the non-profit Northern Illinois Fire Sprinkler Advisory Board, which advocates for sprinkler systems, says fire sprinklers are important for life safety and property protection in high-rises.
According to Lia, who was Fire Marshall for the Orland Fire Protection District southwest of Chicago, more than 80 older residential high-rises have retrofitted fire sprinklers.
New high-rises with fire sprinklers and older high-rises that have retrofitted fire sprinklers are those that will be the most fire-safe and marketable to safety-conscious buyers and renters.