Have wondered about not just residential use but what about commerical structures that could be using light weight materials.
I watch for weeks a four story building go up using wood material and then found out its a hotel.
I know the building will have sprinklers and stand pipes but I would hope the fire rating will keep the fire in check before any fire company reaches the fire floor and the room involved if there is a fire.
Great discussion, also as pointed out earlier, renovations to older homes, you can have a combination of old and new construction methods, and also the hidden hazard of Asbestos ( "Cement Sheet") used in construction up until the 80's. We have a lot of lightweight construction down here, and as a volunteer department/brigade it takes us extra time to turn out if we are not at the fire station when the alarm is raised. So these types of construction are usually very close to fully involved when we arrive on scene and so an external attack is possibly the only way to manage the incident. If there are no persons reported, then why risk your crew?
Fairfax County, VA has a terrific program on lightweight ENGINEERED construction firefighting, and they've done some significant strategy improvements on how they fight them. I was fortunate to have a class at the National Fire Academy with one of their captains, Dave Barlow, earlier this year. He has an excellent training program on trusses, glue-lam trusses, OSB I-beams, tilt-slab particle board, and other new-school construction elements and how they burn.
I had a pretty good idea of how the combination of flimsier structures and hotter fuels changed the equation for us. but Dave's program has some excellent specifics that were great to take home.
I highly recommend it for anyone who has construction that is NOT 30 years or more old.
Any data/studies/PPT you can share or references you can cite?
When you say glue-lam trusses, are they now laminating the truss material itself, as opposed to the typical 2x3 spruce chord/web construction?
Also, the tilt-slap particle board, is this tilt-slab concrete or more like SIP construction?
I think that everyone is right that we need to approach things differently than in the past and look more towards safety. My biggest concern now is that we are going to far the other way, We are not being Firefighters if we allow a bed fire to burn a house to the ground. There are safe ways to still be aggressive Firefighters. It is a Fact that we are now losing more houses than ever in the service due to leaning towards safety but has the number of LODD's declined at the same rate? NO