Preventing Roof Collapse.
Did you know that heavy, wet snow can weigh up to 21 pounds per square foot?
Overall, we have noticed that most claims are collapsing of roofs because of significant snow build-up.
Snow has a great deal of weight, and that weight increases immensely when rain, ice and sleet are added to the mix. Two feet of snow on the average-sized roof can be the equivalent of 38,000 pounds, or 19 tons, NBC News reports. All of this weight puts stress on your roof and weakens its structure. Learn more about the dangers of snow-cover roofs.
Make sure you are taking the right actions to prevent your building from collapsing.
Also, please consider the following information when dealing with snow on your roof:
- Remove the snow as soon and as safely as possible.
- This includes clearing and unblocking drains.
- Try not to create piles of snow as drifts can form.
- Remove snow in a matter that maintains balance of your building or barn.
- Be careful while on the roof and be aware of openings in the roofs! A local farmer lost his life in a snowblowing accident because of a roof skylight. Only allow authorized people on your roof.
- Know what types of buildings are susceptible to collapse. Is your building older or doesn’t have a concrete foundation? Does your barn have a low-pitched roof?
- Know what types of weather conditions are dangerous. Make sure to consider high winds and changing temperatures along with the heavy snowfall. When the weather warms and we start seeing rain, the roof weight will be even more significant. Please take care of the snow removal as soon as possible.
- Do not use your local fire department to remove snow with water. Your typical fire hose puts out about 1,000lbs worth of water a minute. This can be an extremely dangerous situation.
Insurance Coverage for Snow Removal
Rural Mutual receives a number of inquiries regarding whether our policy covers snow removal from a roof to prevent ice damming. Our property policies with Rural Mutual Insurance cover direct physical loss, not the maintenance required to prevent a loss from occurring.
We do cover the internal water damage from an ice dam, but we do not cover snow removal to prevent ice dams.
Ice Damming is a well-known and well documented condition. Property owners should be aware and realize that it’s their responsibility to maintain their properties to prevent such conditions. Taking preventative measures can help prevent damage from occurring while minimize repair costs.
Rural Mutual Insurance Agents and Claims Adjusters respond to numerous claims in a timely manner to help our customers following large amounts of snow and freezing weather. For more information contact your local Rural Mutual Insurance agent.
Safety is our business
As you’d expect from Wisconsin’s third largest Business Insurer, Rural Mutual offers powerful, cost-effective solutions to the increasingly complex risks you face as a business owner and individual.
As a Rural Mutual client, you and your employees get access to hundreds of safety resources, checklists and information at your fingertips.
Our expert adjusters, timely claims service and time tested policies have you covered.