Continuing on with our roof venting thoughts please direct your attention to the below video.
While viewing it you will see a roof prop, and 2 fireman going through a training evolution. Once the hole is cut you see the fireman “louver” the roof decking, and then make a “punch” with the hook in order to push down the ceiling below effectively venting the fire room.
Now while this has been an accepted practice for years, times are changing and with the economy being what it is, homeowners have started to finish attic spaces, in order to provide additional storage, or even living space.
Take a look at this attic interior, making the punch through this plywood, from an elevated position will be virtually impossible and that is before it is loaded with clothes, holiday decorations, and all of the other things people put in their attic. So the effort to vent the roof will have been essentially wasted as you will not be able to vent the room with fire in it, giving no relief to the interior crews, and wasting valuable on scene resources for no gain.
This is not just a phenomenon on residential roofs, a lot of times commercial structures originally constructed with flat roofs add a “rain roof”
This is a picture during the construction of a rain roof, essentially what this is a peaked roof above a flat roof in order to shed rain and prevent the flat roof from leaking. However under fire conditions it may appear that this is the only roof on the structure. I remember a hotel fire a few years ago were a trench cut was ordered. The companies took the roof and spent a lot of time cutting the peaked roof only to get finish the cut and find a flat roof below them. Needless to say they did not cut off the fire spread.
So what does all this mean? Whats the point? Well the point is to fully evaluate your ability to perform a successful roof vent operation in your department. Do you have the skills, knowledge, staffing, and ability to do this? Is roof venting your best option, or is horizontal vent giving you the most bang for your buck. If you think you can vent the roof, can you do it in a timely fashion? What are your options for venting the roof?
These and many other questions must be answered prior to engaging in roof ops.
If you have any thoughts, comments, or feedback of any kind please feel free to contact us through the various forms of social media we have to offer.
As usual thanks for reading, spread the word, and STAY SAFE!