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Snow load collapses Jackson business roof

Jackson Hole Fire/EMS is asking people to stay away from Sears, Axis Academy, and Jackson Hole Bowl after a partial collapse of the building’s roof. The collapse was reported at 6:05 p.m. by the manager of Sears, who told dispatchers the roof collapsed because of snow loads. Fire Chief Mike Moyer said there was obvious buckling of the building. In part of the Sears building, ceiling tiles were about 5 feet from the floor. There were people in the adjacent businesses, but when Axis employees heard a crashing noise they took action to evacuate everyone from the building. There were about 25 students and 5 Axis employees in the gymnasium at the time of the collapse. Lower Valley Energy was called to ensure that gas and electric services to the building were turned off.
Jackson Hole residents were advised that many homes and businesses are experiencing snow loads this winter that are much higher than they have been in a long time. Teton County Emergency Management provided these tips: *Take your time and know your limits when shoveling snow. Working beyond your limits can result in injuries and heart attacks. If you have neighbors with special needs who can’t remove their own snow, offer to help them out. *If you don’t have experience working on a roof, call a contractor or landscaper with roof-clearing experience to help you out. *Many roofs in the valley are sliding with little notice. Don’t linger in doorways or at the edge of rooflines of buildings, and remain aware of your surroundings. *Keep fire hydrants clear. If you have a hydrant on or near your property, shovel it out for easy fire department access. The Town of Jackson Engineering Department also advised that anyone shoveling snow into the city right-of-ways must first get a Public Right-of-Way permit from the town.

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