Fire Related Damage

Posted by in Fire Damage | July 29, 2019

Most fire damage is obvious where the wood has charred or been consumed, the steel is deformed, the masonry exhibits a pink hue and spalling, the concrete exhibits a pink hue and punky sound when struck with a hammer.  But what happens when building components that were not exposed to the excessive temperature were saturated with water from the extinguishing operations?

Here are some examples:

Figure 1 Underside of floor deck exhibits microbial growth from prolonged exposure to excessive airborne moisture from evaporation of water from extinguishing.
Figure 2 Floor boards swelled and buckled from exposure to excessive wetting during extinguishing.
Figure 3 Wall boards swelled and separated from exposure to excessive wetting during extinguishing operations.
Figure 4 Mortar eroded from joints of wall during extinguishing operations.
Figure 5 Soil shelf eroded from around footing by water from extinguishing operations.

I am not faulting the firemen. Great quantities of water are usually necessary to douse a fire. But, great quantities of water also cause other issues that may not appear to be related to the fire, but they are.