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Where do you feel safest from the threat of a fire? At home? You’re not alone. A 2008 nationwide survey by the Society of Fire Protection Engineers showed that 79% of Americans feel safer from fire at home than in public. In reality, the overwhelming majority of fire deaths occur in the home.
Modern commercial and public buildings have many fire protection features that are not present in most homes. Some of these, like fire sprinkler systems and illuminated exit signs, are obvious to the casual observer. Others, such as fire-rated stairway enclosures, are less noticeable. The owners and occupants of commercial and public buildings are responsible for properly maintaining fire protection and detection systems, building service systems (such as electrical and heating and cooling equipment), and emergency exit facilities and equipment. Inspections by fire department personnel, code enforcement officials, and insurance company representatives help to ensure that these systems are…
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