Heavy Snow Topples Roof

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LANSING TOWNSHIP - The weight of snow is blamed for a roof collapse of a commericial building in Lansing Township.

Shortly before 11 o'clock Wednesday morning, fire crews responded to the empty building in the 400 block of N. Rosemary Avenue. They found the entire back end of the structure had collapsed. Hundreds of cinder blocks were left tossed around the lot.

According to neighbors, the building had been vacant for several years. No one was inside, and no one was hurt. Utility companies were called in to shut down gas lines and electricity.

Robert Hilts' backyard sits behind the building. He heard it collapse at around 4:30 in the morning. "It felt like a earthquake. I mean I was in bed, and it just shook the house."

Captain Mike Kaloz of the Lansing Township Fire Department says the flat roof of the building wasn't strong enough to hold the heavy snow. "I believe most likely the snow on the roof of this building was too much for this, the walls and the roof structure to hold it up and the walls gave way." Kaloz says the front of the building is still in tact. "It took us a little bit to find it initially, because from the street. It doesn't look like anything happened but it does have a considerable collapse in the back and, it was actually quite surprising."

The building had been up for sale for the past couple of years. Fire Crews say the Township will require the owner and realtor to tear it down soon.

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