High-rise fire sprinkler bill passes first reading at Honolulu City Council

A proposal to require older residential high-rises to install sprinkler systems has moved a step forward.

In a unanimous 9-0 vote, Bill 69 passed its first reading at the Honolulu City Council Wednesday.

It was introduced in the wake of a massive, seven-alarm fire at the Marco Polo high-rise that killed three people and caused more than $100 million in damage.

The July 14th fire is considered one of the worst fires in Hawaii history.

Bill 69 was drawn up by Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell and has received support from the Honolulu Fire Department.

If it becomes law, it would require buildings 75 feet or taller to have fire sprinklers installed within five years.

Lawmakers are also looking at incentives and breaks for condo associations that take on such a costly project.

The bill will now be heard by the Committee on Executive Matters and Legal Affairs on Aug. 22.

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