Inherent Deficiencies of Gang Nails and the Engineered Lightweight Wood Truss

By Frank Leeb
Firehouse.com
November 14, 2022
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States

The potential dangers of lightweight construction and its inherent deficiencies must be understood by every firefighter and fire officer. From a strategic and tactical standpoint, lightweight construction often dictates and demands fireground strategic and tactical actions that account for early collapse potential. This is particularly true when a fire progresses from a contents-only fire to a structural components fire. One particular type of lightweight construction of concern is the lightweight engineered wood truss with gang nails, which sometimes is referred to as a gusset plate. …With greater frequency, structures are constructed with smaller and lighter weight engineered building materials instead of the larger, heavier dimensional lumber that’s found in older construction. …Without question, the most important factor to a safe and successful operation at these types of buildings is the identification of the presence of lightweight construction.

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