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Manchester Tall Building Sprinkler Activation

6 April 2023 @ 4:30 am

  • Fire Rescue Service; Greater Manchester Fire & Rescue Service
  • Incident; Fire
  • When; 6 April 2023
  • Time of call; 04:30
  • Where, Sale
  • Location of fire; Bedroom
  • Occupancy; Residential block of flats 10 or more stories
  • Automatic fire suppression System; Residential sprinkler system

Greater Manchester Fire & Rescue Service have reported the following fire involving a residential block of flats resulting in the activation of the premises residential sprinkler system.

The Premises

  • Residential block of flats of 13 storeys
  • Prefab concrete construction block
  • Built in 1970s.


  • GMFRS mobilised 5 Pumping appliances, 1 Aerial appliance
  • The seat of the fire was established to involve a bed mattress, linen within a bedroom.
  • Prior to the arrival of the FRS, a resident tackled the fire with a fire extinguisher.
  • 1x sidewall sprinkler head actuated extinguishing the remainder of the fire.
  • GMFRS assume that time taken to extinguish the fire was 5-10 mins.
  • Firefighting crews on arrival established that the fire had been extinguished.
  • Proceeded to turn off the flat sprinkler isolation valve.
  • Fire damage 3m²
  • Natural and PPV ventilation undertaken to clear smoke.

Business continuity

  • GMFRS reported that if it had not been for the sprinkler system, the flat would have been uninhabitable for several months following the fire with the resident having to be decanted into alternative accommodation.
  • Estimated value of damage £1000

This incident demonstrates once again the benefits of installing sprinklers within residential tall buildings for firefighter safety.

  • Rapidly reducing the rate of production of heat and smoke allowing the fire officer crucial time to implement the operational tactical plan.
  • Allowing firefighters to complete search and rescue operations by limiting fire development, which significantly reduces the risk of flashover.
  • Integrity of the means of escape, maintained.
  • Fire contained within the compartment of origin.
  • This incident demonstrates that a correctly designed and installed sprinkler system can detect, raise the alarm and control or in this case extinguish a fire at an early stage of development and activate an alarm.
  1. Protecting firefighters
  2. Protecting, reducing risk to life
  3. Protecting property

Further guidance


6 April 2023
4:30 am


Location (Town/City)
Type of Sprinkler Installation
Wet Pipe