Two Unsprinklered Chicago High-Rises Experience Fires on Same Day

Feb 24, 2016, 14:21 ET from Northern Illinois Fire Sprinkler Advisory Board

ORLAND PARK, Ill., Feb. 24, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Last night, a fire occurred in the unsprinklered high-rise at 5421 South Cornell Drive in Chicago. Two elderly people were taken to the hospital after the fire occurred in their 10th floor unit.

The high-rise passed its city of Chicago Life Safety Evaluation (LSE) just a month ago on January 28, but did not install fire sprinklers. There is nothing in place to stop a fire in the individual units, thereby putting residents at risk. In addition, responding firefighters could not get the elevators to work and had to use an exterior staircase, putting them at greater risk of injury.

The fire occurred on the same day as a fire at 3130 North Lakeshore Drive, another residential high-rise that passed its LSE without fire sprinkler protection even after having a fatal fire in 2012.

"An audit should be performed to evaluate how 5421 South Cornell Drive, 3130 North Lake Shore Drive, and other questionable residential high-rises that have had fires have passed their Life Safety Evaluations," says Tom Lia, a former fire official and executive director of the nonprofit Northern Illinois Fire Sprinkler Advisory Board.

About the Northern Illinois Fire Sprinkler Advisory Board (NIFSAB)
NIFSAB is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting progressive legislation, raising public awareness, and educating code officials and governmental policy makers by demonstrating the proven performance of fire sprinklers in saving both lives and property. For more info, visit


SOURCE Northern Illinois Fire Sprinkler Advisory Board