By John M. Malecky
Collapse of Burning Buildings
Video Training Program
By Vincent Dunn, Deputy Chief (ret.), FDNY
Five DVDs: $109.00 each or $491.00 for all five
Five Videos: $89.00 each or $399.00 for all five.
This is a set of five DVDs or videos supporting Collapse of Burning Buildings by Vincent Dunn. They are broken down into five categories, Wall, Peaked Roof, Truss Roof, Floor and Wood frame Building Collapse. They each vary in time but average about 20 minutes each.
Each DVD starts out with a brief flashback of several fires from the past where firefighters were killed and/or injured due to collapse. The DVDs also are loaded with footage of actual fires and fireground activities. Each DVD has an average of four questions at the end, which can be used for discussions.
The DVD topics include:
Wall Collapse: Since more are killed outside the building by walls, there are four safe operating procedures to employ; new information learned within the past 10 years, types of wall material, bearing, non-bearing and free standing walls, three problems causing collapse, applying fire streams, accountability and five ways to be safe/productive against wall collapse.
Peaked Roofs: Five kinds of peaked roofs, their dangers and how they are compounded compared to flat roofs; how to familiarize yourself to the types of roofs in your community, how they are built, four reasons why firefighters must go up on roofs, how to size up and operate on the roof including a demonstration of the “roofer’s walk”, where to look for rotting and cautions around objects out side of the roof (porches, chimneys, skylights, etc.)
Truss Collapse: three ways they can collapse, types of buildings that have them, their makeup, heat sinks and crew reporting differences (inside verses outside) and which is more accurate.
Floor Collapse: Why they collapse and what the warning signs are, classes of construction, makings of a floor and its supports, four types of collapses and where firefighters would be found in them, deck, beam, arch and column collapse and the advantage and danger of fire cut beams.
Wood Frame Collapse: Includes light weight truss construction, three types of collapse, nature of wood frame collapse, how the buildings are designed, four types of construction through the years, what stages of fire are collapses likely to occur, how to protect yourself from collapse and distinguishing bearing walls from non-bearing walls.
There are many, many firefighters now deceased because of collapse. This program, ideally supported by the book and workbook, will provide firefighting forces with a new dimension to respect the potential danger and guard against it while at the same time doing their job of extinguishing fire.
John M. Malecky is a 32-year veteran of the Bayonne (NJ) Fire Department and a battalion chief (retired) with Battalion 2. He joined the department in 1970 and was named a lieutenant in 1987, a captain in 1994, and a battalion chief in 2000. He is author of Apparatus Deliveries in Fire Engineering.