The latest on snowbound Southborough: Measurements and warnings

by beth on February 16, 2015

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Above: The “beep, beep, beep” this morning alerted me to a happy sight – a DPW worker digging away at the high snowbanks on the corner. (Photo by Beth Melo)

Snow fall total as of 11:00am on Sunday was 13.75” (Southville Rd area) - Photo contributed by SEMASnowfall in town was measured at 13.75″ over the weekend, according to Southborough Emergency Management Agency. (Click thumbnail for details.)

I’m beginning to wonder if the Snow Miser has relocated.


posted to You Tube by HolidayFavorites

With that additional snow,and more on the way this week, comes another warning from SEMA. They remind us to clear roofs, hydrants and vents. This one comes with signs of potential roof collapse.

I’m sharing an excerpt from their message below:

Hazards (still):

  • While it may be exhausting and certainly repetitious it is still just as (if not more) important to keep clearing fire hydrants, home/business egress/exits, and exhaust vents.
  • With the drifting snow these will need to be reevaluated regularly for additional clearing needed.

Roof / Collapse threat (increased):

  • With over 7 feet of snow accumulation (and, sorry, possibly more Tuesday night) the snow load weights on roofs are at extreme levels and beyond the structural roof-load requirements of the building code (especially buildings built before the mid-1970’s).
  • Structural collapse can occur instantaneously with little to no warning!!!
  • Do not under estimate the threat. Collapses can also cause electrical and gas leak hazards 
  • Note: The State has several regional and one state/federal technical rescue teams trained specifically for structural collapse rescues all of which have all been placed on alert for quick response anywhere in the Commonwealth.
  • It is VERY important to inspect your roofs for extreme snow buildup and remove snow as necessary.
    • Southborough recommends hiring a professional contractor but if one chooses to clear their own roof:
      • 1) Be extremely careful, 2) Never do it alone, 3) Always have someone watching and able to call 9-1-1 if needed.
  • It is VERY important to monitor visual/audible signs for roof issues/potential failures.
    • Visual = Cracks, Uneven doorjambs or water spots.
    • Audible: Creaking, cracking, hissing (basically any unusually sound).
  • Actions:
    • If you see or hear any signs of potential issues immediately exit the building and call the fire department non-emergency number: 508-485-3235 (business hours) & 508-485-2147(night/weekends).
    • If there IS ANY TYPE of collapse or roof/wall failure IMMEDATELLY exit and call 9-1-1 (or 508-485-3232 – fire emergency).
      • If there is anyone still inside, immediately tell the dispatcher (how many & where they were last located)

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