1. #1
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    Default Is this really necessary?

    Granted im not an officer, and i havent been on long but isnt this unnecessary? It has self vented so why put guys on top of the fire?
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    I would say thats really not needed and possibly a little unsafe!!

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    that is what i was thinking, maybe there were mitigating circumstances the IC saw that we cant but i think its unsafe.
    "Let's Roll." Todd Beamer 9/11 first soldier in the war on terror

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    It is venting pretty good

    But seriously, perhaps he is trying to keep the fire from spreading down the roof line? Whatever his reasons, he is not in as bad a position as it looks at first glance. He is standing on a flat roof attatched to the peaked roof, there is probably a load bearing wall in between, and the plastic skylights indicate there is no heat or fire under him.

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    Default Trench Cut?

    I would guess by the second pic as well as the article (apartment building) that crews were attempting a trench cut to save the remainder of the building.

    The second pics shows a straight cut from the peak down, obviously made by the chainsaw. Yup, my guess would be trench cut.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PFDTruck18
    I would guess by the second pic as well as the article (apartment building) that crews were attempting a trench cut to save the remainder of the building.

    The second pics shows a straight cut from the peak down, obviously made by the chainsaw. Yup, my guess would be trench cut.
    My thoughts exactly. Naturally with the fire burning that well the roof members may be weakened, but the pictures only show us 1/60th of a second of time. I'd like to think if the roof was getting spongy, the members would say "F" the trench cut and hop down.

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    Looks like he was trench cutting. Was this a fire you were at firefighterox?Maybe that was outcome after he cut a hole and didnt realize he was pretty much right over the fire.

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    i dont see anything wrong with this at all. Though the fire self venting it does not look like it is adequetely venting. We all know that a vent hole should be atleast 4x4. Other possiblity is that he is making a trench cut, but i dont know why he would be doing it becuase it is a SFD.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MEckert129
    i dont see anything wrong with this at all. Though the fire self venting it does not look like it is adequetely venting. We all know that a vent hole should be atleast 4x4. Other possiblity is that he is making a trench cut, but i dont know why he would be doing it becuase it is a SFD.
    Uh I don't know about you but I am not going to be the one to enlarge that hole. Nor are any of my crew for that matter.
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    It does look like a trench cut. As far as how much ventilation it is offering, I say very very little to none. It appears as though the roof material itself(shingles) is what is burning, not that the fire has vented from the inside out. This could have been a fire that started on the outside of the roof, perhaps from embers from a brush fire or something.

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    The first picture looks as though the fire self vented from the inside. If that is the case, additional ventiliation would be too risky for the benifits it would provide to the interior crews, IMHO.

    It's not just the integrity of the roof I'd worry about in that situation but what happens when the wind kicks up in an unfavorable direction and you're standing that close to that large a body of fire?

    If it is a trench cut as the third picture seems to indicate, they should be abandoning at this point. If not they simply started the trench in the wrong place. The idea is to make inspection holes to ensure you don't make the trench directly over the fire.


    Those guesses are just based on what the pictures show, and as everybody else points out, more information on the circumstances surrounding the photos would be of benefit.

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    I look at it like this....if I don't get that hole cut...my boys on the inside fighting the fire....are that much hotter.

    I'd say IF you're put in that kind of position....one man and one man only cut the hole. No extra weight needed. At least have a guy at the top of the ladder to have somebody notice if he falls in...

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    Yes, this operation is necessary. The problem is with the sequence of your pictures. You may have downloaded them wrong or they may have been posted wrong. This fire did not "self ventilate." Santa Clara FD FFs cut this heat hole in a good spot, as shown by the amount of fire coming from their hole. There is a good chance they may have extended this hole as well, depending on the communications from fire attack on the inside. If fire attack is not getting good relief from a vent hole, then the truck must extend this hole until it is communicated that they have improved interior conditions. Of course, the truck company on this roof must have a good, solid roof operation, etc., etc., before cutting over the fire. "Self ventilate" is a poor term. Just because a fire shows through a roof does not mean "ventilaton" has occurred; it may be necessary for a truck to still get on the roof and cut over a portion of the roof in order to facilitate interior operations...again, depending on the experience/operation of the truck company. Also, if you are not willing to go on a roof because you think it is too dangerous, how can you justify putting people under the same roof. As some others already mentioned, you need all the facts before questioning strategies/tactics based on a few pictures.

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    Good points kieranhope. I also feel there's a need for roof work to make sure the task is done right....moseley if the wind shifts take a breath, turn your face away from the cut, and squat down. When it clears start cutting again.

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    Darn Santa Clara Fire Dept... don't they know unsafe when they see it... I was always taught if it's well venting stay the hell off the roof... cause the roof could be prone to collapse! Master and ariel streams would have been a better approach then putting guys on the roof!
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    I agree, I'm the Asst.Chief of my department and there's no way in hell there is
    any good reason to put a crew on a roof thats already vented itself. My questions
    are what type of trusses did you encounter,where they light weight materials? And
    how well invovled was the structure? Reguardless, your officers should debrief
    the situation and set it in a form of an SOP so in the future your crews aren't
    put in a dangerous situtation like that again. Thanks, Dave

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    Red face

    [QUOTE=dave32881]I agree, I'm the Asst.Chief of my department and there's no way in hell there is
    any good reason to put a crew on a roof thats already vented itself. My questions
    are what type of trusses did you encounter,where they light weight materials? And
    how well invovled was the structure? Reguardless, your officers should debrief
    the situation and set it in a form of an SOP so in the future your crews aren't
    put in a dangerous situtation like that again. However, I do agree it's a
    Trench Cut. Thanks, Dave

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    Dave and Brubaker, what type of operation do you guys run? If you read the article from "Hotshots" in October, it states,"The arriving crews quickly ASSESSED the situation and set about cutting the roof to provide ventilation. Interior attack was made difficult by the sheer volume of fire and smoke..." It states NO WHERE that the fire had "vented itself" as you guys love to say. Also Dave, you're stuck on trusses. It says nothing about trusses, may be it was 2 x 10s with straight sheeted 1x6. You guys need to get the facts before sharing your ignorance. Yes, you can still ventilate on a trussed roof, just not directly over the fire; if it's convetional truss, then you DO ventilate over the fire. Don't be afraid of trusses, learn about them and cut on them. Brubaker, aerial and master streams, what for? Based on the pictures? You probably have saved many foundations in your career. "Crews gained the upper hand in 30 minutes...able to contain the fire to one side of the building while also successfully salvaging the remainder of the structure." Brubaker and Dave, you guys would have lost the whole complex, which is not our jobs if we can help it, as Santa Clara did. Also, Dave, we don't care what rank you are, you may be one of those guys who shot up the career ladder with no experience. GET THE FACTS.

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    Quote Originally Posted by truckie226
    It appears as though the roof material itself(shingles) is what is burning, not that the fire has vented from the inside out. This could have been a fire that started on the outside of the roof, perhaps from embers from a brush fire or something.
    They look to me like cedar shake wood shingles from an older house...that's how they burn. It isn't an outside fire.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave32881
    My questions are what type of trusses did you encounter,where they light weight materials?
    And considering the shingles identify the age of the house...I highly doubt you have to worry about trusses in this dwelling.
    Last edited by SeavilleFire; 11-27-2005 at 12:05 AM.

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    Default self venting

    Regardless of what might have been said those photos ar of a roof that has self vented. That's not the shakes on fire.

    A trench to prevent further spread might make for the first photo. (I'd do it furhter away than that but hey)

    The next ones are of people standing in or on fire. Not what I'd call safe.

    The only good reasons to increase ventalation are to prevent flashover, and reduce rollover and steam for the interal crew.
    It looks like those shakes are doing a good job.

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    Berwyn FD, pay attention. READ the article from October, this roof was CUT by the SCFD. How do you come up with,"regardless what anyone says, this roof has self vented..?" Were you there? NO. Have you talked to anyone from SCFD? Not likely, since you didn't mention it. "It looks like the shakes are doing a good job." What kind of statement/experience is this that you are talking about? Do shakes ventilate? Look at the pictures from the article, the FFs CUT the roof, as stated in the article. Get over this "self vented" fear. If a fire has self vented, it may have done so in a place where it will not aid FFing. This does NOT mean a truck company cannot go to the roof or that you have to immediately go defensive. This is why we sound a roof, determine what is under it structure-wise, have a safe and competent operation, and communicate with interior Fire attack about conditions. You may have to ventilate a roof that has self vented. The self venting may be in the rear of a structure, but the attack teams may have to enter the front and need ventilation in order to make an interior attack. There are no absolutes, as you should know. Again, GET THE FACTS/EXPERIENCE.

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    Unless theose photos were doctored, everything in this thread is speculation/opinion. I stated what I saw in the pictures. I wasn't there nor stated what the facts were.

    Why so defencive about this? Why not try and learn from others, including things gon wrong. A NIOSH fatality report should be the last defence for learing how to operate safely.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kieranhope
    Berwyn FD, pay attention. READ the article from October, this roof was CUT by the SCFD.
    Sorry friend, but that 1st photo shows a self vented roof. Nothing has been cut. Unless you Bros vent roofs out there by chopping little holes in multiple places.

    So, unless the photos are not in the right order time wise, or they are going to do a trench cut, they shouldnt have been on that roof.
    Last edited by Dave1983; 11-29-2005 at 06:17 PM.
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    Here's something that is not speculation:

    At its largest, these photos show about 50 sq. ft. of roof surface. These photos were also taken with a telephoto lens, which skews the depth of field.

    It is impossible for any of you to make any type of intelligent judgement about what you are seeing unless you have a WHOLE lot more information than what you see in these photos.

    That is not speculation. That is fact.

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    Unless you Bros vent roofs out there by chopping little holes in multiple places.
    Actually, a few (if not many) CA fire departments do make many little holes while venting. They use them as inspection holes, ways to check progress, ways to find where the larger vent holes need to be cut, etc. So, it is quite possible they did make a bunch of little holes in multiple places.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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