Skip to main content

Developed and maintained by the NFCC

Control measure

Carry out appropriate intervention: Fires in buildings under construction or demolition

Control measure knowledge

Fires in large timber buildings under construction may be resource intensive. Additional resources may be needed including personnel, equipment and water, and this should be given consideration early in the incident. Further information about this can be found in National Operational Guidance: Operations and National Operational Guidance: Fires and firefighting.

The speed and weight of attack required will depend on the stage of fire development and the construction of the building. Early intervention may prevent escalation, but if this is not possible, defensive tactics may need to be adopted. Refer to National Operational Guidance: Fires and firefighting.

Refer to the control measure of Incident ground safety management in National Operational Guidance: Fires in buildings

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Provide operational personnel with risk information about current timber building construction sites if available

    Note that the Structural Timber Association (STA) requires their members to inform the local fire authority of any timber frame project. There is also a memorandum of understanding between the STA and the Chief Fire Officers' Association.

Tactical actions

Incident commanders should:
  • Determine the need for additional resources
  • Identify the stage of fire development
  • Consider the level of fire protection
  • Deploy appropriate firefighting tactics
  • Consider a tactical and controlled withdrawal
  • Consider that rapid fire spread may occur at incomplete timber framed buildings

  • Consider that the structural integrity of incomplete timber framed buildings may fail rapidly

  • Tactical ventilation may accelerate fire growth and spread where timber framed buildings are incomplete