29 Jun What makes abandoned buildings more dangerous than others?
When firefighters arrive on the scene of an active fire, information is immediately gathered about the type of fire, entry points, plan of action and kind of building the team is going to have to deal with. However, much of this information is extremely unreliable in the matter of a collapsing building.
Recently, our sister site Security & Fire Africa looked at a deadly fire in an abandoned building just off the Johannesburg main rail line. Two children were killed as a result of fire spreading through a crumbling building.
Abandoned buildings such as those occupied by many throughout cities in the Middle East, pose many threats to those attempting to live in them, the lack of protection from the elements and often unstable, older materials used to create the building, can lead to crumbling rubble and partial collapse.
Not only does this have a knock-on effect, causing further long-term damage to the building, but it also means that all information a fire team has logged on the building is critically out of date.
Points of entry may change as a result of rubble, and areas that are expected to be well-ventilated may now be death traps holding heat and smoke in.
As more individuals move into abandoned and dilapidated buildings, Fire teams must be aware that they will find themselves in situations demanding improvisation.