Let it burn: When the risk is too great, firefighters must stand back

Safety risks and environmental impacts are two reasons to let a fire burn itself out

There is a time and a place when it is more important to let a fire burn than to try to extinguish it.

One such time is when the environmental impact will far outweigh the need to extinguish the fire.

This decision is far more difficult than whether a fire is an interior or exterior attack, but both decisions should consider the risk versus reward.

Such was the case at a recent major fire in Morgan Township in Butler County, Ohio. In the week following the fire, I had the opportunity to discuss this decision-making process with Morgan Township’s Fire Chief Jeff Galloway.

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