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Roof collapse

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Roof Falls In on Fairfax City Firehouse

Firefighter Joe Tutt heard the cracking, dropped his gear and dashed out of 
Fairfax City Fire Station 33 yesterday morning--just before a huge section of 
the roof collapsed into the station's garage, causing at least $500,000 in 
damage. 

Workers from Colbert Roofing Corp. and Bradco Supply Corp., both of 
Springfield, were preparing to renovate the roof of the 22-year-old station 
at 10101 Lee Hwy. and had hoisted several tons of shingles and other supplies 
atop the building. Shortly after 10 a.m., the roof gave way, sending the 
supplies plummeting onto a reserve ambulance and a utility pickup truck 
parked in the garage.

<snip>

Investigators had not determined the cause of the collapse by last night. If 
the ambulance and pickup truck were total losses, Barklage said, the damage 
estimate would rise.

Jerry Colbert, president of Colbert Roofing, said that employees from both 
his company and Bradco were involved in hoisting materials to the roof and 
that he was unsure what caused the collapse. Bradco officials declined to 
comment.
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For full article:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A24114-2000Apr27.html

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Ok, this kind of thing happens and it seems pretty obvious what happened but 
my question is what if anything can we do to avoid this circumstance during 
construction.  Here at my office we include the standard Contractor 
responsible for construction loads, etc.  How well does that really protect 
us?  What do others do to address construction loading, if anything?

-Bill King