If a fire starts, they may just let it burn rather than risk firefighters’ lives.
In a fire, seconds count, and that was why firefighters were speaking out Saturday about the consequences of an added obstacle sprouting up on Bay Area rooftops: solar panels.
Solar panels covered part of the roof of a Piedmont home that was destroyed by a 2-alarm fire on Tuesday.
The cause of the fire was still under investigation Saturday, but Piedmont Fire Chief Warren McLaren was clear with reporters after the blaze was extinguished that the home’s solar panels made fighting the fire that much more difficult.
“Oh absolutely, it made it hard on the roof,” said McLaren.
Concern over solar panels prompted a 2010 report from the Fire Protection Research Foundation that said that the panels were not only potential hazards for tripping or slipping, but the additional weight from the panels contributed to the possibility that the roof would collapse.
Got Solar Panels On Your Home?