Do you mask up while working in the roof?

We looking for departments that have an actual SOP or other specific instructions regarding wearing and using SCBA while on the roof.  It's a common discussion and many express pros and cons over what 'should' be done, but we're looking for those who have specifics.

Do you wear and use your SCBA while performing vertical ventilation? Do you do it because it is written out in your assignments?

We want to hear from you. If your department specifically states that you must wear and use SCBA while operating on the roof of a burning structure, contact us at

Photo courtesy of Wayne Barrall

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Thanks to Castle Rock Fire and Rescue, CO for sending us their SOP.


if we are conducting any operations on a structure fire we are masked up anything inside or on the roof is considered an idlh area

Stephen Duffy,

There are all kinds of options for venting.  Vertical roof vent, horizontal venting, hydraulic venting, negative pressure venting, and positive pressure venting.

A good tactician will pick the appropriate method of venting given the incident.  

I don't personally know of any that outright prohibit it as a possible tactic. Again a seasoned experienced officer would make the choice to go or not go on roof venting ops.  Follow that up with the crew accessing the roof can stop that operation and leave the roof if they deem it unsafe.

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