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Career lieutenant dies after being trapped in the attic after falling through a roof while conducting ventilation - Texas.

Tarley J; Miles ST; Merinar T; Morris GP
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, FACE F2011-20, 2012 Jun; :1-23
On August 14, 2011, a 41-year-old career lieutenant died after falling through a roof and being trapped in an attic. The lieutenant was part of a two-man crew attempting to perform vertical ventilation of a two story multi-family apartment complex. The fire department had responded to multiple fires over the years at this apartment complex. The roof decking material was over 30 years old and would not meet the current building code. The fire on the first floor was quickly brought under control but had spread into the attic along the exterior wall and through the eaves. The fire had compromised the structural integrity of the roof decking material prior to the crew operating on the roof. When the lieutenant crossed over the peak of the roof to ventilate above the fire, he fell through the weakened roof and into the attic. His legs went through the ceiling of the second floor apartment while his body remained in the attic. He was wearing his self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) but was not wearing his facepiece and was overcome by the products of combustion. He was rescued by crews operating at the scene and transported to a local hospital where he died from his injuries.
Region-6; Accident-analysis; Accident-prevention; Emergency-responders; Fire-fighters; Safety-education; Safety-equipment; Safety-measures; Safety-practices; Work-environment; Work-practices; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Accidents; Traumatic-injuries; Fall-protection; Ventilation; Height-factors; Respiratory-protective-equipment; Self-contained-breathing-apparatus; Face-masks; Combustion-products; Mortality-data; Surveillance
Publication Date
Document Type
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
Identifying No.
FACE-F2011-20; B09262012
NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Public Safety
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: May 11, 2023
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division