Fire Prevention & Protection, Firefighter Training, Firefighting

Avoid Tactical Breakdown: Respect Lightweight Construction

Issue 1 and Volume 169.

By Anthony Avillo It seems that we have recently been plagued by a rash of line-of-duty deaths (LODDs) and close calls involving lightweight construction, namely lightweight wood truss. Over the years as well as recently, the fire service has certainly had its share of casualties in this type of construction. Because of these casualties, we have researched, analyzed, evaluated, and disseminated a great deal of solid information with regard to the dangers of lightweight construction. Unfortunately, that information is not being heeded as often as it should be, which is all the time! (1) Compare the original flat roof joists and the lightweight renovated peaked wood roof trusses. Which would you rather work on? (Photos by author unless otherwise noted.) Fire service personnel must understand that lightweight construction has always been, still is, and will continue to be a firefighter killer if we fail to respect its limitations. We must…

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