Unbalanced snow loads may pose problems for certain types
of arched roofs and could even cause a collapse, the Alberta
government announced in a recent news release. Arched roofs
are typically found on industrial buildings, curling rinks
Safety Services of the Municipal Affairs Department advises
owners of arched roof buildings that the structures may not
be able to support unbalanced snow loads, and that a collapse
could occur, brought on by drifting on the roof caused by
heavy snowfall and high winds. Owners should have their roofs
inspected immediately by professional engineers, so APEGGA
members should be aware that they could be called upon for
this work. Until inspections have been conducted, owners should
avoid using the buildings when the weather conditions could
cause problems or when there is heavy snow on the roofs.
Municipal Affairs is making amendments to the Alberta Building
Code, which will correct the design shortcomings in new buildings.
The amendments will likely be adopted this spring. Safety
Services was alerted about the possible problem by the Canadian
Commission on Building and Fire Codes.
Affected roofs have a height/width ration lower than 1/10
but higher than 1/20. For additional technical information,
visit the website www.gov.ab.ca/ma/ss.