Winter Roof Collapses: Bad Luck or Bad Design—

by Ann E. Seltz-Petrash, Asst. Editor; CIVIL ENGINEERING—ASCE, New York, N.Y.,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1979, Vol. 49, Issue 12, Pg. 42-45

Document Type: Feature article


An overview of the collapses in 1978 and 1979 in Chicago and in the Northeast shows that, in most instances, the design codes are adequate. Designers, however, have not paid sufficient attention to the problem of snow drifting. Other major causes of roof collapse due to snow are that the buildings are improperly designed and/or constructed or improperly maintained. Recommendations include inspection and maintenance programs, emergency shoring and roof snow removal programs and increased attention to snow drifting. Box on the new ANSI A58.1 standard for snow loads and rain loads included.

Subject Headings: Snow loads | Rain loads | Winter | Roofs | Roof failures | Standards and codes | Building design | Inspection | Chicago | Illinois | United States

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