FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 22, 2011
CONTACT: Cheryl Kraft, Chief Fire Marshal
(631) 728-1088 Ext. 2920
Town of Southampton Makes Pro-Active Adjustments to Help Increase Firefighter Safety
Following Injuries Caused by Floor Collapse During House Fire
After a floor collapse during a Hampton Bays house fire injured several local volunteer firefighters the Town made changes to its computer reporting system to better capture information that should help fire officers make better informed decisions during firefighting operations in our local homes.
Construction techniques have been evolving. As a result many newer homes are now being built with truss construction in the roofs and floors. New material technologies are posing many challenges for our fire fighters. Products are now being used that are made of composites which include engineered wood product “I” beams and laminated veneer lumber. Such products decrease our need to harvest lumber and help to keep costs down for home building. While these products are as strong as or even stronger than typical solid wood joists, they fail quickly when heated. Studies have shown that no fire contact is actually required for the binder glues to fail resulting in a collapse situation.
New York State Fire Code requires commercial buildings made with such products to be placarded, but no such requirement exists for residential buildings. In an effort to provide pertinent construction data to the local fire service, the Town will now be adding information to the computer program for renovations and new construction to be able to compile lists of locations using such products.
The Town plans to provide the information to each of its local volunteer fire departments to provide them with a tool to pre-plan, add to their computer dispatch information or use as they see fit.
More PSA's - 2010
Public Service Announcements Archive - Year 2009
Public Service Announcements Archive - Year 2008