The Minnesota Chapter of NFSA participated in National Home Fire Sprinkler Week (May 16-22) activities by conducting side-by-side demonstrations in Minnesota and Iowa. The first event took place on tribal lands in Onamia, Minnesota, and was hosted by the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe in conjunction with a National Fire Academy Community Risk Reduction Class. The second demonstration took place in Waukee, Iowa, in support of the Waukee Fire Department.

In both burns the smoke alarms activated in 10-13 seconds. Sprinkler activation took place 16-20 seconds after ignition. That is nearly as fast as the smoke alarm activation! Flashover took place in less than 2 minutes, 30 seconds in the Mille Lacs burn, and in 4 minutes, 30 seconds in the Waukee burn due to the high winds experience in Iowa. These demonstrations continue to be shared on social media, and video recordings of the events will become part of fire safety presentations around the region.

Click here to watch the sprinkler activation at the Mille Lacs demonstration.


Click here to see a slow-motion video of the rollover/flashover sequence at the Waukee demonstration.


These two live burns were conducted in support of local fire officials and public educators. These professionals are critically important and extremely active in community risk reduction efforts and educational outreach to both firefighters and the public. The mission of the NFSA is to “Protect lives and property from fire through the widespread acceptance of the fire sprinkler concept.” For that acceptance to take place on a widespread basis, we need to support and engage those AHJ members who reach both firefighter groups and public audiences with fire safety awareness and educational messaging that can save lives and livelihoods. They can leverage NFSA work and extend our “reach” with their local activities. AHJ members of NFSA are our trusted partners in public safety and in NFSA mission accomplishment.

The Minnesota Chapter appreciated working with Waukee Fire Chief Clint Robinson, Fire Marshal Justin Frederick, and the Waukee firefighters and officers, and thank them for their professionalism and support at the demonstration in Iowa. We also profoundly thank Ojibwe Emergency Manager Monty Fronk, the Division 1 Tribal leadership, and the Ojibwe DNR fire crew for their invitation and support during the demonstration in Onamia. These professionals are on the front lines of keeping their communities safe from fire, and we are proud to stand alongside them to help reach, teach, and engage citizens to incorporate the fire sprinkler concept into their homes and businesses in NFSA Area 6 (IL, WI, and MN) and Area 7 (KS, MO, and IA).