Habitat ReStore roof collapses
February 5, 2014
Employees who reported to work at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Eagle on Saturday morning got a big surprise.
Heavy snow from last week's storm collapsed the roof of the 31-year-old building located at the Eagle Commercial Park. From the street, the damage isn't apparent because the roof collapse only affected the rear part of the building.
"A lot of people don't know that roof has come down, " said Eagle Building Official Bob Kohrmann. He noted that engineers have been called in to determine the specifics of the incident but one thing is certain — the roof couldn't support all the heavy snow that piled up last week.
"The back half of that building is all open, with metal support beams," said Kohrmann.
“From Dotsero to East Vail, the whole valley has a heavy layer of snow on roofs and people should be concerned about it.”
Eagle Building Official
"We are very grateful that this happened at night and luckily no one was hurt," said Tom McKay, manager of the Habitat ReStore.
Since the collapse, utility service to the building has been shut down and owner Glen Miller has brought in Interstate to coordinate damage assessment, demolition and reconstruction services.
"Our store may not be open, but our trucks are still working," McKay said. "Habitat is still going to do what we do best, which is picking up donations."
Habitat is in the process of finding additional storage space and will keep the community informed about future plans for its ReStore location as well as interim sale events.
Watch your roof
In the wake of the ReStore roof collapse and last week's massive snowfall, Kohrmann has some words of warning.
"People need to get this snow off their roofs. There is a lot of weigh up there right now," said Kohrmann.
He noted that last week's snow had a high moisture content, making it exceptionally heavy. Additionally, now the snow has had time to compact in place and thaw a bit. That means there's ice building up on local roofs and the weight continues to pile up. Kohrmann said there is also a concern about furnace and hot water heater vents getting blocked by snow.
Over at the Habitat building, crews from TCC Roofing were on site Monday removing snow from the front part of the building. Kohrmann noted that hiring a professional crew — equipped with harnesses and other gear — is often the safest option for roof snow removal.
Kohrmann said the buildings that present the biggest concerns are structures that have flat roofs and older buildings. He added that roofs with minimal pitch — 3/12 to 5/12 — are also a concern.
"From Dotsero to East Vail, the whole valley has a heavy layer of snow on roofs and people should be concerned about it," Kohrmann said.
Area residents with questions or concerns about the snow load on their roofs can contact one of the following numbers:
Bob Kohrmann, Eagle Building Official at 970-328-9657
Greater Eagle Fire Department at 970-328-7244
Gypsum Fire Department at 970-524-7101.
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