Share

In One Image, This Facebook Photo Shows the Fury of a Brutal Winter

By Sean Breslin
Published: March 14, 2014

Amanda Hubbard/Facebook

Amanda Hubbard told The Weather Channel her car was totaled by a massive sheet of ice and snow that fell off the roof of her apartment building in Winsted, Conn.

Amanda Hubbard felt the crush of a long, brutal winter when a huge chunk of ice and snow fell off her apartment building's roof and obliterated her car parked on a Winsted, Conn. street.

She posted the above photo to The Weather Channel's Facebook page, stating that she watched in horror as a season's worth of snow and ice slid off the roof and totaled her car parked on the street below.

"It's worth the cost to clear roofs!" she said. "This could have been much worse than just a totaled car!"

(MORE: See How Much of the Snow Season Is Left for Your Town)

During a relentless winter, keeping a roof clear can be a losing battle for residents in the North. Still, it becomes a necessary evil as the weight of snow and ice mounts on top of homes and businesses.

According to Dr. Greg Forbes, severe weather expert for The Weather Channel, since a cubic foot of water weighs 62.4 pounds, a foot of snow with a 10:1 snow-to-water ratio sitting on a 1,000-square-foot roof weighs 6,240 pounds.

Then, accumulated snow and ice can be made even heavier by other factors as the winter progresses.

"A frequent winter problem are ice dams. These form when heat from a home, apartment or condo's ceiling escapes into a poorly-insulated attic, melting snow in the upper reaches of the roof," said weather.com senior meteorologist Jon Erdman. "Lower sections of the roof don't receive as much heat from the attic, thus the meltwater flowing downhill refreezes into a block of ice near the gutters. As temperatures warm, more meltwater backs up behind the ice dam, adding pressure to the dam until it finally breaks free."

(WATCH: See How This House Stays Attached to the Side of a Mountain)

To keep from experiencing a similar situation as Hubbard, keep your roof clear of snow and ice all winter, or hire a crew to clean it off before the spring thaw loosens large chunks. Also, ceilings should be sealed and insulated to ensure heat isn't escaping and creating these ice dams.

Most of all, be observant while outdoors and mindful of where you park your car, because we could see this scene in the weeks ahead as we inch toward spring.

MORE: Winter Storm Vulcan Socks the North

Bob Landon blows snow from a sidewalk in the South End neighborhood on Thursday, March 13, 2014, in Albany, N.Y. Bitter cold temperatures return after a winter storm dumped up to six inches of snow and ice on the Capital Region. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)


Featured Blogs

Quietest Atlantic Hurricane Season Since 1986

By Dr. Jeff Masters
October 1, 2014

The traditional busiest month of the Atlantic hurricane season, September, is now over, and we are on the home stretch. Just three weeks remain of the peak danger portion of the season. September 2014 ended up with just two named storms forming--Dolly and Edouard. With only five named storms so far in 2014, this is the quietest Atlantic hurricane season since 1986, when we also had just five named storms by the beginning of October.

Another Record Rainfall in Southern France

By Christopher C. Burt
September 30, 2014

It is hard to believe that another rainstorm of equal intensity to that which I blogged about just 11 days ago has again struck the Languedoc Region of Southern France. This time the focus of the storm was centered over the city of Montpellier, Herault District, near the Mediterranean Coast.

Live Blog: Tracking Hurricane Arthur as it Approaches North Carolina Coast

By Shaun Tanner
July 3, 2014

This is a live blog set up to provide the latest coverage on Hurricane Arthur as it threatens the North Carolina Coast. Check back often to see what the latest is with Arthur. The most recent updates are at the top.

Tropical Terminology

By Stu Ostro
June 30, 2014

Here is some basic, fundamental terminology related to tropical cyclones. Rather than a comprehensive and/or technical glossary, this represents the essence of the meaning & importance of some key, frequently used terms.

2013-14 - An Interesting Winter From A to Z

By Tom Niziol
May 15, 2014

It was a very interesting winter across a good part of the nation from the Rockies through the Plains to the Northeast. Let's break down the most significant winter storms on a month by month basis.

What the 5th IPCC Assessment Doesn't Include

By Angela Fritz
September 27, 2013

Melting permafrost has the potential to release an additional 1.5 trillion tons of carbon into the atmosphere, and could increase our global average temperature by 1.5°F in addition to our day-to-day human emissions. However, this effect is not included in the IPCC report issued Friday morning, which means the estimates of how Earth's climate will change are likely on the conservative side.