SC firefighters advocate keeping sprinkler code

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina firefighters are urging legislators to uphold a new building code requiring that new homes be equipped with fire sprinklers.

Dozens of firefighters from across the state came to the Statehouse on Tuesday. They want the Senate to defeat a bill that would block the sprinkler requirement.

The state Building Codes Council adopted the 2009 international code earlier this year. It would mandate all one- and two-family homes built after Jan. 1 be equipped with sprinklers.

Firefighters say they will save lives and reduce the cost of injuries and property damage.

But the Home Builders' Association wants sprinklers to be a homeowner's choice, not a mandate. Home builders say the added cost will prevent some people from being able to afford a home.

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