In the Northeast, we experience adequate snowfall, and for the most part, we take steps and precautions throughout the winter to properly remove snow from our properties. However, every once in a while we have a historical snowfall that blankets the area with feet of snow rather than inches. While we do our best to stay safe and warm, one of the hazards of a monumental snowfall is the increase in collapsed roofs. If you are a property or building manager, or a homeowner concerned about the weight of snow on your roof, we’ve assembled a list that will ensure your property is safe from a dangerous event like a roof collapse.
During winter weather this season:
- Watch the ice and snow accumulation on your building’s roof as well as the levels of snow drifting in certain areas of the roof. Wet snow is much heavier than fluffy snow and can quickly increase the weight bearing down on the structure.
- Understand your roof’s weight load capacity. If you own an apartment or an office building and are not sure of the snow capacity limit, contact a structural engineer for help. HVAC upgrades and other equipment upgrades may have changed the amount of weight sitting on your roof, therefore reducing your snow capacity tolerance. Know your limitations and have a snow removal plan.
- If you do have to remove snow from your roof, have a removal plan that doesn’t hinder doorways, hydrants, or city meters. Blocking these areas could cause additional injuries that are easily avoidable by working smart.
- Use plastic shovels to avoid damaging the roof. Metal tools may damage a roof resulting in additional repair costs.
- Keep an eye out for warning signs that the structure is compromised; cracked windows or frames, sagging ceilings, and leaks could be a potential sign that your roof is in trouble.
It boils down to being aware of your surroundings and having a solid plan to effectively remove snow from any areas in danger of collapsing under the weight of heavy snow and ice. With a few precautions, you, your family, and your tenets will have a safe environment this season.
Should you experience a roof collapse from heavy, wet snow, call our team at LaPointe Construction Board Up Service. We are available 24/7 to handle any of your winter weather emergencies. We will temporarily shore your structure so it is safe for workers to access the damage. Additionally, we have the tools and equipment to cover the roof in order to protect the property from problems that could arise from snow and water. Our construction crew will repair the property so you or your tenets can resume their normal activity.
For more information about our Temporary Shoring Solutions, call us at 978-447-5991 or visit our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/LaPointeConstruction. We are happy to help answer any questions you have and can provide you with a solution that best suits your needs.