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A Major Step Forward: FM Global Announces Major Evolution of Fire Protection Standards

WINDSOR, UK — FM Global, one of the world’s largest commercial property insurers, has rolled out important modifications to its fire protection standards with the introduction of a new Property Loss Prevention Data Sheet 2-0, Installation Guidelines for Automatic Sprinklers and a revised version of its Data Sheet 8-9, Storage of Class 1, 2, 3, 4 and Plastic Commodities. These changes come as a result of FM Global’s extensive research and testing of the latest sprinkler technology and are intended to help simplify fire protection choice, maximise protection while minimising installation costs, and support overall sustainable business practices.

According to Brion Callori, senior vice president, engineering and research at FM Global, over the years, much has changed in the design and application of sprinklers in industrial and commercial settings. “FM Global has led the way in loss prevention engineering and fire research for more than a century. Our latest research shows that specific design characteristics determine the effectiveness of a sprinkler—not ceiling density—and that these factors can be used to ensure that FM Global’s fire protection standards offer the most potent protection schemes.”

“Callori added that the evolution of FM Global’s fire protection standards involves moving away from sprinkler density as a design criterion and towards key performance attributes associated with sprinkler design and installation characteristics, such as K-factor (ability to flow water), orientation, response time and temperature rating.”

The new Data Sheet 2-0 replaces several existing FM Global data sheets, specifically Data Sheet 2-2, Installation Rules for Suppression-Mode Automatic Sprinklers; Data Sheet 2-7, Installation Rules for Sprinkler Systems Using Control-Mode Specific Application (CMSA) Ceiling Sprinkler for Storage Applications; and Data Sheet 2-8N, NFPA 13 Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems 1996 Edition, which had been used by FM Global for the installation of Control-Mode Density Area (CMDA) sprinklers.

The revised version of Data Sheet 8-9 reflects, among other changes, new sprinkler terminology including substitution of the terms Control-Mode Density Area (CMDA), Control-Mode Specific Application (CMSA) and suppression with storage, non-storage and special application. The new terminology is being used to better reflect the intended use of the sprinkler, as opposed to its assumed performance, as well as align with terms used by sprinkler manufacturers. Additionally, there are new protection tables that will make it easier to pinpoint the best and most cost-effective sprinkler solution.

“These progressive new standards continue FM Global’s tradition of advancing sprinkler technology and will allow our clients around the globe to provide better fire protection for their properties,” said Shivan S. Subramaniam, FM Global’s chairman and chief executive officer. “Following these new guidelines will result in less fire, smoke and water damage should a fire occur. In addition, because these new standards require fewer sprinklers, less piping and lower water pressure to operate, we believe clients will realise reduced costs for more effective protection options, making automatic sprinklers not only simpler and cheaper, but also a more sustainable choice for loss prevention.”

For more information on FM Global’s Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets, or to sign up to receive unlimited access to the company’s data sheet library, visit