Deep Snow Is Deep Trouble
So far this season, we have not had a massive snowfall like the recent record breaker in Newfoundland, but winter isn’t over yet. Every year, many roofs collapse due to heavy snow or ice accumulation. Add rain or wet snow falls on top, and a roof can easily become overloaded. Often roofs collapse suddenly, giving occupants little, if any, warning to evacuate. It can happen to new or old buildings alike, and cause extensive damage to both the building and its contents. Low pitched and flat roofs are the most susceptible to collapse.
Watch for ice buildup on the edge and valleys of your roof, known as “ice damming”, which causes water to back up and enter the building under the shingles and wood decking. It occurs during alternating freeze/thaw cycles due to heat loss through the roof. In addition to adding extra weight to the roof, ice dams can cause extensive water damage inside, which may not be automatically included on your policy.
Excessive accumulations of snow and ice require removal. For safe removal that won’t damage your roof or endanger you, consult a professional. Be certain the contractor you choose is adequately covered by WSIB and provides you with a current liability insurance certificate.