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Hank Investigates

Preventing Roof Collapse in Storm

Heavy snow puts a lot of weight on your roof, putting it in danger of collapsing. But there are steps you can take to protect it. 7's Hank Phillipi Ryan continues our Storm Force coverage with tips to save your roof.

This is what can happen: remember all this from last year? When too much snow gets just too heavy? Too much snow on this Norwood building this firefighter escaped just in time.

So now, these pictures in mind, the threat of roof collapse weighs heavy on home and business owners.

"If it all falls at one time and it's really heavy... (that's bad) if it falls over a length of time you're gonna be a little better off," said Jay Bullens, Able Roofing.

For some homeowners--this is the weapon of choice--a roof rake--a long handled gizmo you use from the ground to pull snow from the roof--like this--before it hardens.

New snow is much, much lighter than the compacted icy stuff that piles up later. Flat roofs and those with low slopes are the most susceptible.

Now's a good time to make sure your gutters are clear, too that lets the melting snow run off, instead of freezing up.

We all know if you let the snow accumulate and begin to melt then freeze again--that can cause roof ruining ice dams--and you don't want that.

If you don't want to do it yourself. There are guys you can hire---experts--who know how to safely climb onto your room to remove the danger--

"Call a professional roofing company someone that's insured and does this the right way," Bullens said.

How much snow is too much? Depends on your house of course--experts tell me most roofs can handle up to four feet of new snow...but you don't want to wait to find out.

Once the snow hits, you'll know you have a problem if you see any leaks or water dripping inside, or if you hear creaking. A roof collapse can happen quickly--so best to try to prevent it.