• High Rise Fire Safety
    Is your high-rise building protected with a fire sprinkler system?

    It just might save your life!
  • Sprinkler Fitters & Apprentices
    Local 281 of the Chicagoland Area

Training Center

Proper and uniform training for persons who desire to become skilled journeymen through an orderly method of improving the mechanical skill and technical knowledge of apprentices in this industry.

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High-Rise Safety

Is your High-Rise building protected from potential death and destruction with a fire sprinkler system? Learn about the benefits of these property and life saving systems today!

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Health & Welfare

For active participants, retired participants and families, our site houses answers to frequently asked questions, a library of all the documents you need to manage your employee benefits, and more.

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Members Only

Please log in to access the Members Only sections. If you do not have a UA Card Number please contact the UA Local 281 Union Office and they will provide you with your temporary password.

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Tentative Agreement for Ratification - (6/16/2017)




  1. Article 1 – No Changes

  2. Article 2 – No Changes

  3. Article 3 – No Changes

  4. Article 4 – No Changes

  5. Article 5 – No Changes

  6. Article 6

    • Change Appendix D to “Addendum” D in Paragraph 4. 
    • Update the non-discrimination clause as to add the following categories: Disability, genetic information, sexual orientation, pregnancy, gender identification or on any other basis prohibited by state or federal law. 

  7. Article 7
    • Add language stating that if an employee leaves the job before regular quitting time “he shall only be paid for the actual hours worked.”

    • Add a definition of Emergency Work as “any work that has to be done immediately to return a system back to Standby Normal Service or any work to Repair a system in jeopardy of having to be taken out of Standby Normal Service.”

    • Add a definition of Service Work as scheduled maintenance or repair work on a fire sprinkler system.”

  8. Article 8  - The wage rates to be paid to journeyman sprinkler fitters shall be:

    • June 1, 2017  -  increase of $2.50 to be allocated by Local 281
    • June 1, 2018  -  increase of $2.75 to be allocated by Local 281
    • June 1, 2019  -  increase of $3.00 to be allocated by Local 281

    • Add a provision stating that the employers may provide required pay information via email.

  9. Article 9

    • The carfare for members performing work in the area bounded by Division Street to the north, Roosevelt Road to the south, Halsted Street to the west, and Lake Michigan to the east shall be increased from $5.00 per day to $8.00 per day. 

    • The reimbursement rate for Employees driving their own vehicle from job to job shall be increased from $0.35 to the IRS rate.

  10. Article 10 -  No Changes

  11. Article 11 -  No Changes

  12. Article 12 -  No Changes

  13. Article 13 -  No Changes

  14. Article 14 -  No Changes

  15. Article 15

    • Language is added to clarify that the term “wages” includes all “employee withholdings, including but not limited to Pay Day Savings deductions.”

  16. Article 16 – No Changes

  17. Article 17

    • The contribution rates to be paid to the Health and Welfare Fund on behalf of apprentices indentured on or after June 1, 2017 shall be $6.00 for first and second year apprentices, $8.00 for third year apprentices, $10.00 for fourth year apprentices, and the full journeyman rate shall be owed for fifth year apprentices.  The contribution rates on behalf of apprentices for all other Funds and all other provisions of Article 17 remain the same.

  18. Articles 18

    • Add language allowing the Union to allocate to the H&W Fund.

  19. Articles 19

    • Add language allowing the Union to allocate to the Pension Fund.

  20. Articles 20

    • Add language allowing the Union to allocate to the Supplemental Pension Fund.

  21. Article 21 – No Changes

  22. Article 22 -  No Changes

  23. Article 23 – No Changes

  24. Article 24 – No Changes

  25. Article 25

    • A provision will be added requiring the Union to provide a bond compliance report to the Health and Welfare Trustees at each quarterly meeting.

  26. Article 26

    • The effective dates of the collective bargaining agreement are updated to June 1, 2017 through May 31, 2020.

  27. Article 27  - No Changes

  28. Article 28 – No Changes

  29. Article 29

    • The number of members on the Labor Management Cooperation Committee are reduced from 10 to 8.

  30. Article 30 – No Changes

  31. Article 31 – No Changes

  32. Addendum A will be updated to the current UA Articles of Jurisdiction. 

  33. Addendum B – No Changes

  34. Addendum C will be replaced with the updated version of the Union’s Dues Checkoff Form.

  35. Addendum D – No Changes


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Welcome to Sprinkler Fitters Local 281

At the United Association of Sprinkler Fitters, Local 281, we are responsible for protecting businesses, schools, homes, and, more importantly, precious lives, from the devastation of fire. It is no wonder we take our jobs so seriously.

Too many cut corners by not installing reliable automatic sprinkler systems. In the event of a fire, these shortcuts can lead to immeasurable damage. Statistics show that buildings with proper fire protection systems suffer twenty-four percent less damage and fire loss than unsprinkled properties.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, from 1983 to 1987, damage from hotel fires was seventy-eight percent less in buildings with sprinkler systems, than those without. The water damage from automatic sprinkler systems is considerably less than from a fire department's hose stream because sprinkler systems require a minimal amount of water to operate. Oftentimes, a fire is brought under control by only three sprinkler heads, sometimes even fewer.

With so much riding on the skills of our Sprinkler Fitters, it is critical that our journeymen receive the best training available. In addition to a rigorous apprenticeship program, many U.A. Sprinkler Fitters choose to expand their skills by voluntarily participating in advanced training programs.  Some even go on to become instructors through the United Association International Instructor Training Program.

The members of Sprinkler Fitters Local 281 are committed to providing quality installation, service and repair to the piping and fixtures used in sprinkler systems.  They know that when human lives are at stake, there is no room for error, and there might not be a second chance to get it done right. That is why the Sprinkler Fitters of Local 281 do the job right, the first time, every time.

Promotional Videos

For more information on High-Rise Fire Safety, please click here.  Below is a Playlist of videos related to Fire Sprinkler Systems.  Click 'Play All' to view all the videos.

The United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the United States and Canada, the parent Union of Local #281 in Chicago, has a long and proud history that goes back more than 100 years.
Sprinkler Fitters Local 281 are pipefitting specialists in fire protection. Our members install, repair and maintain all types of fire extinguishing systems. Please browse our new website to learn more about our members, new merchandise, and to receive up-to-date information about our organization.

Included on our website is our contractor list or you can contact us direct at Local 281 for your important fire protection needs!

Our Skills

  • New Installations
  • Retrofits or Maintenance
  • Professional Inspection
  • Testing and Service