“To the Roof”

By Douglas J. Mitchell Jr.

Take a look around the next time you are getting the meal or out on driver familiarization, but focus at the roof-line of your first due.

If you are like me, you are noticing a big change in what we see at and on rooflines of residential and commercial occupancies. From roof decks, cell phone, to solar….green is in. Once deemed rather useless, roof space is increasingly being used as “quality space” for building owners.

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Using this space may have a dramatic impact on our job as firefighters such as reduced access for ventilation and increased roof loads, to name just a few.

Units noting such changes must be sure to notify the surrounding companies and if possible make a prompt inspection.


DOUGLAS J. MITCHELL JR. has more than 20 years in the fire service and is a lieutenant in the Fire Department of New York. He previously served in Fairfax County, Virginia. He is a vice president of Traditions Training LLC and has co-authored the book 25 to Survive: Reducing Residential Injury and LODD (Fire Engineering).

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