Fire sprinkler systems may be used as an effective method of providing fire protection. When fire sprinkler systems are used with truss systems, it is essential to design the trusses to carry the additional dead load and required live loads imposed by the fire sprinkler system. As metal plate connected wood truss usage has become more prevalent in all construction types, it is essential for the Building Designer to consider the loads imposed on the truss system and provide the Truss Designer with this information. This allows the Truss Designer to make provisions in the truss design for the structural effects of the fire sprinkler systems.
The open webbing of truss construction makes it highly compatible with other building trades. Water lines for sprinkler systems can be run through the open webbing, making maximum use of the available space and eliminating costs associated with drilling or the loss of headroom. Occasionally, a building’s use or its contents demand a fire sprinkler system with special layout requirements and heavy main waterlines that cannot be compromised. Truss construction can easily be manipulated with adjustments to panel lengths and web configurations to accommodate most special requirements.