Depending on the actual water content in snow, the snow can weight about 6 pounds per square foot at a depth of 12 inches.
The weight of the snow will then equal about 600 pounds for every 10×10 foot area of 1 foot deep snow.
The weight of 2 feet of snow on a 80×40 foot roof could be an incredible 38,400 pounds!
That’s 19 Tons!
Typical weight of 1 foot of snow on a roof
30 x 40, 7,000 pounds
40 x 40, 10,000 pounds
60 x 40, 14,000 pounds
80 x 40, 19,000 pounds
Typical weight of 2 feet of snow on a roof
30 x 40, 14,000 pounds
40 x 40, 20,000 pounds
60 x 40, 28,000 pounds
80 x 40, 38,000 pounds
Allowing several feet to accumulate on the roof of a building, can quickly stress the roof to it’s breaking point.
This is exactly what is happening on snow burdened roof’s throughout the northeast U.S., particularly in Connecticut which has suffered tremendous snowfall so far this winter season.
Roof Collapse Events in Connecticut
Bethany, CT, Roof Collapse at Fairfield County Millworks
Chesire, CT, Roof Collapse at Cox Communication
Enfield, CT, Roof Collapse, the top of a warehouse building caved in
Hartford, CT, Roof Collapse of garage leads to demolition
Manchester, CT, Roof Collapse at Lou’s Auto Sales
Meriden, CT, Roof Collapse at Jacoby’s Restaurant
Middletown, CT, Roof Collapse of the entire length on the Passport Inn building
Middletown, CT, Roof Collapse tears off 3rd floor of downtown building
Milford, CT, Roof Collapse at manufacturing building
Naugatuck, CT, Roof Collapse at warehouse
Naugatuck, CT, Roof Collapse at Thurston Energy
Norwalk, CT, Roof Collapse of horse arena – stable
Somers, CT, Roof Collapse of barn
South Windsor, CT, Roof Collapse of bowling alley
Stafford Springs, CT, Roof Collapse of mill building
Trumbull, CT, Roof Collapse of a tennis club
Trumbull, CT, Roof Collapse at Taco Bell
Vernon, CT, Roof Collapse of car dealership building
Waterbury, CT, Roof Collapse of Duckpin Bowling
The Survival Preparedness lesson here is to somehow get your roof shoveled, particularly on lesser sloped roofs. It’s easier said than done, but there is such a thing as a specially designed roof shovel, or roof rake, that have long telescoping handles to enable reaching up onto the roof allowing you to pull down on the snow, sliding it off.
Flat roofs however, require someone going up there and shoveling. A dangerous assignment. There are reports of people having fallen from their roofs in Connecticut while shoveling the snow, mostly suffering from broken bones.
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