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The German fire protection trade association, bvfa, has collated news alerts about fires in healthcare facilities. These are fires large enough to become newsworthy. Through to the end of October 2022 there were 141 such fires in Germany, leading to 223 injuries, or almost one every day, and 13 deaths. All but one of the deaths came in care homes or homes for the elderly.

Germany does not require sprinklers in healthcare facilities. Data analysis of fires in US healthcare facilities conducted by NFPA found that sprinklers reduce fire deaths by 85%, even among this vulnerable population. Research conducted by BRE for the British government found that while sprinklers would probably not save a vulnerable person involved in the initial fire, for example by accidentally setting fire to their clothing or bedding, they probably would save other residents.

There are voices in the German healthcare sector calling for sprinklers. They should be heard.