Assisted Living Fire Sprinkler Requirements

Read our Bethany Terrace Assisted Living Facility case study to learn how F.E. Moran Fire Protection retrofits partial fire sprinkler systems.

By August 13, 2013 all long term care facilities will need to be equipped with supervised fireAssisted Living Facility sprinklers, as enacted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Becoming compliant may seem like a daunting task. However, hundreds of similar facilities have taken the steps necessary to comply with these new requirements. Their decision making process and experience can help with your facilities' compliance process. With over four decades of experience designing, installing, and servicing fire sprinklers for long term care facilities, assisted living facilities, and nursing homes, F.E. Moran Fire Protection offers the following information to help support your compliance decisions.

Becoming compliant may seem like an overwhelming task, but F.E. Moran Fire Protection's item checklist makes it simple.

1. Key Items to Consider 

When choosing a fire protection solution provider, below are some items to consider in order to ensure a simple, worry-free project.
• Bondable, reputable installer
• Cost-conscious construction planning
• Training for in-house staff
• Respectful installation, providing minimal disruption to residents and facility
• References from similar facilities

Elements of the facility can affect the project. Items include facility lay-out, facility size, fire pump/water supply needs, building structure/materials, work area available, options chosen, and phasing. When a facility chooses to phase a project, they choose to have a set number of sprinklers installed in a pre-determined timeframe in a certain area of the building. Phasing can slow the project, but is occasionally necessary to meet resident's needs.

As part of the fire sprinkler mandate, facilities need to have regular inspections, testing, and maintenance to ensure continued compliance.

2.  Budgeting for Fire Protection Compliance

F.E. Moran Fire Protection will work with facilities to provide a rule of thumb estimate during the survey process. A typical nursing home or assisted living facility can expect to pay $300-$700 per sprinkler. If a facility has inadequate water pressure, a fire pump will be needed. Fire pumps range from $75k-$150k total for the fire pump, electrical, and water.

General requirements for fire protection solutions within assisted living facilities:
• Light to ordinary hazard locations need one sprinkler system per 52,000 ft2.
• Upright and pendent spray sprinklers are permitted in assisted living facilities.
• On average, sprinklers are needed every 75-125 ft2 in an assisted living facility.

Use our custom calculator to estimate the approximate cost of your facility's fire protection project.

Compliancy is necessary, but finances can lead to delay. Illinois and Indiana have low interest bonds available for 501 (c) (3) facilities for the installation or upgrade of fire sprinklers. 

Illinois Bond Information and Application

icon Indiana Bond Information and Application

Insurance discounts may be applicable to facilities with fire sprinklers. Contact your insurance provider to learn more.

3. Scheduling for Fire Protection Compliance

In order to guarantee on time compliance, facilities should schedule their fire protection system installation sooner rather than later. Waiting until the last minute could lead to an influx of competing projects, resulting in a delay of installation. Scheduling the construction of fire protection solutions early can positively affect cost by providing adequate time for scheduling and construction.

A typical facility can expect to schedule 1.5-2.5 hours per sprinkler. Some items that can affect the schedule are resident's temporary housing options, patient mobility, vacancy percentage, or if space is available to store construction materials.

4. Training Will Ensure Compliancy without Extra Cost

To reduce the cost of fire sprinkler maintenance, F.E. Moran Fire Protection provides customized training for facility staff. Staff will learn how to remedy signals and provide minor maintenance before small issues become expensive problems.

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Tags:  nursing home fire protection, assisted living facility fire protection, fire sprinklers, healthcare fire protection

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