Danger in the ceiling space

Have you looked in your roof/ceiling space lately? 
Ember ignition here during bushfires 
is a major cause of house destructions.

Bendigo residents fighting fires.Before it gets too hot, crawl in and shine the torch up. Do pinpricks of light show through the roof? Bushfire embers could enter here. Solder or otherwise plug gaps in roofing metal; fasten and seal loose tiles.

These are extremely vital bushfire-protection chores. The ceiling space is very vulnerable. A tile or galvanised iron sheet lifted by strong wind, a nail hole, a gap in the eaves, can let in flying sparks and embers.

Historic home Wolta Wolta SA -webEven a spark can ignite roof dust and eventually ignite rafters. Slowly and unseen, fire builds up, gases erupt, and up goes the whole roof space. This can take hours.

It often starts after a fire front has passed, while the ember shower is still falling If shelterers are ignorant of what is happening above them, a flaming ceiling collapses in.

House -historic dest embers in roof

The fire front had passed this South Australian historical home and the owners thought it had been spared. But embers had penetrated the ceiling space, unnoticed.

Too many bushfire deaths and house losses happen this way.

They need not.
• Embers can’t penetrate roofs if you have continuous metal sheeting and/or roof sprinklers. Best are low flow sprinklers. And have enough water to run them.
* Embers can’t penetrate roofs if you secure loose iron and fill nail holes.
* Fill cracks with a fire resistant expandable epoxy-type filler.
* Insulate above and below rafters.
* Insulate with mineral wool, fibreglass batts or aluminium foil laminate.

ON THE DAY:
Keep inspection door open, with ladder against it with a torch, and water in knapsack or garden sprayers, handy just inside it. And, of course, wear protective clothing.

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