Winter Storm Jonas is finally beginning to pass, but the wake of destruction left in its path will take months — if not years — to repair.
According to Syracuse.com, the cataclysmic blizzard dumped approximately three feet of snow on cities across the East Coast over the weekend. Tens of thousands of travelers were stranded during the storm, and at least 19 deaths have been directly related to its devastation.
The unprecedented snowfall and hurricane-force winds were particularly harmful to homes and businesses. On Sunday, NJ.com reported that the Trader Joe’s in Westfield, NJ is now closed indefinitely after its roof collapsed under the weight of the snow.
The store’s roof and three of its walls simultaneously buckled around 2 p.m. on Saturday during the height of the storm. While some employees did come to work that morning, Westfield Fire Chief David J. Kelly said no one was injured.
Now, Trader Joe’s is attempting to relocate as many employees as possible to other store locations. There is no timetable for these decisions as of yet, and the store’s employees will likely be out of work for the foreseeable future.
The Westfield Trader Joe’s, like many other homes and businesses, was equipped with a traditional roof that was not meant to withstand heavy snowfall. Many buildings in the South feature metal roofing to protect against hurricane damage, and Winter Storm Jonas may prompt more East Coast building owners to invest in better roofing solutions.
Collapsed roofs were a reoccurring theme of this historic storm, and the damage wasn’t limited to New Jersey. According toandnbsp;The Morning Call, the roof of the Calvary Fellowship Church in Downington, PA, also collapsed over the weekend due to the weather.
Calvary Fellowship Church is about 30 miles west of Philadelphia. The church’s pastor, Lee Wiggins, said that the roof collapse caused more than $1 million in damage to the 1,100-seat auditorium.
Pastor Wiggins added that it will take about six months to repair the roof. For now, he has set up a web stream from his living room to conduct Sunday masses.
While the worst of Winter Storm Jonas seems to have passed, its widespread devastation will be felt and remembered for decades to come.
Mitigation to Prevent Roof Collapse
Trader Joe’s and other businesses and residences in the area could have avoided the roof collapse by having a roofing service reinforce the roof inside and out.
Reinforcing a roof means adding trusses on the interior. On the outside, it refers to the addition of products such as weft inserted warp knit scrim, coatings that add to roof strength and absorb moisture.
The best roofing products for your specific roof will vary, but by contacting an experienced roofer, you can determine which products would work best through an on-site consultation. You can work with the roofer to explore the different kinds of shingles and the best roofing system for your building.
Many different roofing options exist, and the best for you will vary depending on your structure’s roof. Flat roofs require different products than pitched roofs. A cement roof requires different mitigation than a shingled roof. You will only know what would work best for your roof once the roofer has walked it and viewed the existing framing from within your attic.
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