On February 16, the Welsh Assembly voted unanimously to require sprinklers in all new housing. The law will apply to new houses, flats, care homes and university halls of residence. Wales is the first country in the world to introduce this requirement. Ann Jones, Assembly Member for the Vale of Clwyd, who proposed the legislation, said: "Not many of the votes we pass here save lives - that one did."
The measure was backed by all three fire and rescue services in Wales, by the Chief Fire Officers' Association, the Fire Brigades Union and many others, including the British Automatic Fire Sprinkler Association, the National Fire Sprinkler Network and the European Fire Sprinkler Network. Once the vote was passed, there was a huge cheer in the assembly. This is a major advance for the use of sprinklers and means new homes in Wales will be much safer than those built in the past. All involved should be congratulated, in particular Chris Enness of the Chief Fire Officers' Association and Ronnie King of the National Fire Sprinkler Network. The legislation will now go for Royal Assent in April. Meanwhile its detailed implementation will be prepared in the form of a regulation.
Posted: 16.24pm, 18.02.11