Residents Warned Not To Climb on Roofs, Awnings Threatened by Heavy Snow

7:52 AM, Feb 8, 2010   |    comments
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WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA) -- Washington DC Fire Chief Dennis Rubin is warning residents from trying to clear heavy snow off rooftops in wake of several collapses caused by overwhelming amounts of snow.

"We think that would be a design for disaster," said Rubin when asked if residents should take action to prevent more collapses.

Rubin said the risk of life threatening falls and other serious mishaps are too high.

Instead, Mayor Adrian Fenty says residents who are concerned about the possibility of structural failure should stay with relatives or check into one of the city's "warming centers" until the danger has passed.

The Joshua's Temple First Born Church in the 4300 block of Sheriff Rd. in NE Washington collapsed Saturday under the weight of snow.

No one was inside the building and there were no injuries when the 103-year old church collapsed at about 2 p.m.

Elsewhere rescuers shored up the top level of a house in the 3400 block of 10th St. NE Saturday after the homeowner reported leaks and cracks had developed in the ceiling.

Numerous awnings and a lesser number of porch roofs have also collapsed. 

Meanwhile,  fire trucks and ambulances continue fighting the challenges of navigating side streets.  Tow truck and plows remain on call to assist when first responder vehicles get stuck.

Written by Scott Broom

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