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Posted on: June 29, 2020

Automatic Sprinkler System Limits Damages in Sterling Apartment Fire

Fire_sprinkler_roof_mount_side_view (2)

Just after 9:00 p.m. on Sunday, June 28, 2020, Loudoun County Fire and Rescue units from Cascades, Sterling Park, Kincora, Ashburn, and Fairfax County along with command and safety officers responded to a reported structure fire at 20759 Ridgehaven Terrace. The 9-1-1 calls indicated that there was a kitchen fire in a second story apartment.

Firefighters arrived on scene to find a small kitchen fire that had been extinguished by the building’s automatic fire sprinkler system. Crews confirmed that the fire had been extinguished and worked to control the water flow from the activated sprinkler head. Two apartment units were affected by water from the sprinkler system and a total of six residents from the two affected units were displaced. The property management staff handled accommodations for the displaced residents. There were no reported civilian or firefighter injuries.

The fire was determined to accidental and a result of unattended food on the stove. This incident serves as another powerful reminder about both the dangers of unattended cooking as well as the importance of these lifesaving sprinkler systems. Practicing fire safety in the kitchen will reduce the risk of a cooking related fire in your home. Always remain alert and in the kitchen when cooking, keep all flammable items away from the stovetop and ensure smoke alarms are installed and functioning properly.

The quick activation of the sprinkler system kept this fire contained to the kitchen, limiting the fire spread, and keeping the damages to only two units. “It’s important to educate the public about how automatic fire sprinklers help to contain and prevent fires from becoming more significant emergencies,” said Fire Chief Keith Johnson. “Fire sprinklers save lives, including those of first responders, and greatly reduce the physical, emotional and financial damages that fires bring to a community.”

To learn more about fire prevention and life safety initiatives in your community, visit the Loudoun County Fire Marshal’s webpage at or call 703-737-8600.

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