Cherokee Fire Protection will be performing installations of fire sprinkler systems in grocery stores, government buildings, hotels and many other occupancies in 2010. We will also continue to provide high quality inspections of fire sprinkler systems throughout Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana and Michigan.
We look forward to meeting our customers needs in the months and years to come. In fact, we're going a step further in meeting customers expectations: We're shooting for the best!
Since 2008, Cherokee Fire has been utilizing Best Practices in construction and project managment. As we enter into 2010, we will be examing and revamping all organizational aspects of our company utilizing accepted ISO standards.
ISO, the International Standards Organization (www.iso.org) registers organizations which have created and maintained a quality management system which complies with their standards. Prior to registration, orgaizations must apply and be subject to an on-site audit of their facilities by an ISO auditor to gain approval.
Cherokee Fire Protection has set an internal deadline of April1, 2011 for application of registration to the ISO 9001:2008 standard. We will be utilizing these quality standards in 2010. Since we're already utilizing industry Best Practices, some customers and vendors may not notice significant changes while others will. Any changes observed, however, will be good changes.
For additional information about the Fire Sprinkler Industry Best Practices, visit: www.fsi-bp.org
For additional information about the International Standards Organization, visit: www.iso.org
Questions regarding Cherokee Fire Protection's quality management system and ISO planning my be addressed by Forest Wilson, President of Cherokee Fire and Quality Compliance Official. (ph: 937-376-2333)
The NFSA membership is composed of manufacturers, contractors, public officials and friends of the industry concerned with stopping death by fire with fire sprinklers.
Recently, the NFSA was instrumental in promoting residential fire sprinklers in new houses and apartment buildings. Since the majority of deaths by fire occur in homes, these new requirements will SAVE LIVES!
The NFSA also works with contractors and building departments to assist in code interpretations and ways to make fire sprinklers an affordable option for any building project.
Cherokee Fire is proud to be a part in this endeavor. For more information, visit the NFSA homepage: http://www.nfsa.org/.
Remember, FIRE SPRINKLERS SAVE LIVES!
"The plumbing industry should stick to developing the green portion of their industry and leave fire sprinkler installation to the same people that have been doing it for the last 100 years," wrote Wilson.
Mr. Wilson's article was published in the August 2009 issue of Contractor magazine and can be viewed online at: www.contractormag.com/columns/letters/leave-sprinkler-installation-0809/
The USFA has promoted research, development, testing, and demonstrations of residential fire sprinkler systems for more than 30 years. Research regarding residential fire sprinklers has indisputably demonstrated that they save the lives of occupants and firefighters, significantly reduce the risk of premature building collapse in a fire where lightweight construction components are used, and reduce property loss caused by fire."
This registration will allow Cherokee Fire to offer quality fire protection services to the governmental agencies of Hamilton County. In order to successfully register, Cherokee Fire was required to demonstrate that we met the detailed definitions and size requirements established by the Small Business Administration (SBA).
Since 2005, Cherokee Fire has performed extensive work in Hamilton County...from rebuilding a fire pump at a local Home Depot store to installing a fire sprinkler system at a Men's Warehouse mall outlet. We also perform fire sprinkler and backflow testing within the city of Cincinnati as a bonded waterworks contractor.
We look forward to working with the Hamilton County Small Business Program on developing strategies to better serve the area residents and businesses in their fire sprinkler, fire pump and backflow needs.
For more information about the Small Business program, visit: www.hamiltoncountyohio.gov/das
As the author of the article explains, facility managers are often tempted to delay expensive repairs or even postpone routine maintenance during these trying economic times. The article examines the cost of delaying the resurfacing of a parking lot. An intital bid of $200,000 increases to $260,000 because the price of materials, labor and taxes will continue to rise and the contractor passes these on to the customer.
Fire Sprinkler systems also require regular maintenance. The Industry standard for regular Inspection, Testing and Maintenance of systems is found in NFPA 25. (www.nfpa.org) Most states and localities have adopted NFPA 25 as a standard and legally enforce the maintenance to be performed as part of the Fire Code.
Owners of fire sprinkler systems are responsible for ensuring that their systems are properly maintained, for both Fire Code and Insurance reasons. A large number of Insurance Companies will not recognize or give discounts for fire sprinkler systems if the system is neglected for a period of 3 years and Fire Marshal's can issue fines against owners that do not comply with the Fire Code.
A motel operator may be first inclined to pick up the phone book, look up a fire protection contractor and call the first company listed to perform his sprinkler inspection. Or, he may call all of the companies listed to get the lowest price quoted. This is a rough economy and all businesses are affected, many are struggling to survive and nobody wants cash to go out the door. But there is one lesson we often learn in business: You Get What You Pay For!
I know a motel operator (actually a few, along with a few facility owners) that used the most inexpensive inspection and maintenance company they could locate..after all, there's not much to maintain in a motel, right? WRONG! This operator was never told that his facility had recalled fire sprinklers! To make matters worse, the manufacturer of these sprinklers offered a FREE Replacement Program, at NO COST for SIX YEARS! The motel owner was not informed of the recalled fire sprinklers or the free program! The State Fire Marshal did a routine inspection of the property, noticed the recalled sprinklers and ordered them replaced! This cost the motel owner $25,000! The motel owner later contacted us and asked me to inspect his system for additional deficiencies and I found other components that were NOT being maintained!
Now it is not the motel owners job or specialty to MEASURE competency in contractors, but there are a few things owners can do to locate a good inspection company:
1. Contract with a "FIRE SPRINKLER" company! There are a lot of "Fire Extinguisher" companies out there that claim they can do everything, but if they are unable to install fire sprinklers than they really shouldn't claim they have ability to inspect them.
2. A good contractor will belong to the National Fire Sprinkler Association (www.nfsa.org) or the American Fire Sprinkler Association (www.sprinklernet.org) Contractors pay hundreds of dollars in dues to belong to these organizations because they offer training, product research and development and play an active role in development of the Fire Codes.
3. References! If a property owner calls me for a reference, I'll give him a few! My references will say that I'm reasonably priced and SAVE THEM MONEY! Some will say we fixed problems that were ongoing for years, which resulted in expensive emergency calls with competitors. Others will say we saved them TENS OF THOUSANDS of DOLLARS by identifying recalled sprinkler components when the competition failed to do so! The one thing our customers will NOT say is that we are the CHEAPEST in town.
Remember, PROPER INSPECTION AND MAINTENANCE OF FIRE SPRINKLER SYATEMS SAVES MONEY!
For more information, call me at 937-376-2333.
Mr. Wilson joined in collaboration with top industry leaders working on Best Practices procedures for Project Management.
"Cherokee Fire prides itself on being a Best Practices company," stated Mr. Wilson. "We go the extra mile to ensure our jobs are completed safely and on-time/ on-budget. I deeply appreciate the opportunity to participate in this forum with such industry leaders."
Cherokee Fire Protection has been operating in Ohio since 2005 and now services the entire state of Ohio, northern Kentucky and Indiana. We are signatory with Sprinklerfitters Local 669 and a member of the National Fire Sprinkler Association (NFSA). We take pride in "Doing It Right the First Time!"
For additional information about Best Practices for the Fire Sprinkler Industry, visit: http://www.fsi-bp.org/ .
Forest Wilson can be contacted by calling 888-347-3079.
WAL-MART SIDNEY, OH
In an effort to help reduce waste, Cherokee Fire has initiated an Office Recycling Program.Office papers which were previously discarded and deposited in landfills are now being recycled.
Our current goal is to reduce waste into the dumpster by 50% within the next 6 months. After that, we will continue to strive to recycle as much as possible and are exploring other steps we can take towards being an environmentally-conscience company.
The Ohio Fire Code requires a 4' clearance around fire hydrants, and this includes snow. As snow piles up and freezes around the hydrant, it makes the hydrant more difficult for fire department crews to recognize.
After the hydrant is located, it takes time for the firemen to axe away the ice and dig the necessary clearance to connect the fire hoses.
Please, check your nearest hydrant and make sure it has a 4' clearance. The property (and possibly life) you save may be your own!