A section of the roof on the north side of Havre High School collapsed under the weight of snow around 8:30 a.m. today.
The newer slanted roof on the building fell on the old flat roof, which is still holding, over the school’s library, cafeteria and kitchen.
Snow hasn’t fallen into any of the rooms, unoccupied during the holiday break, but large amounts of snow and debris are currently on top of the electrical conduit that runs through that part of the building, throughout the rest of the building.
Emergency official inspect building
By 10 a.m., the Havre Fire Department and NorthWestern Energy had already gone through the collapsed area and were meeting with school officials, including Superintendent Andy Carlson, Assistant Superintendent Tom Korst and Havre High School Vice Principal Kip Lewis, to discuss what was going to happen.
Engineers, including those from Patrick Construction and Pipeline, were on their way to conduct a structural analysis of the collapse and provide a more accurate idea of the damage.
“Right now we don’t know that much,” Carlson said. “The big thing is to find out if it is safe.”
Classes are supposed to resume on Monday, though not enough is known to make a decision about whether that will happen.
The dozen or so people were meeting to discuss what may need to be done.
Food for students a concern
Because the collapse was over the kitchen and cafeteria area, there was concern about the school’s ability to provide food for students. Early ideas were being put forth for contingency plans, including using other parts of the building to feed students, including the autoshop.
Carlson said that, depending on the analysis, the school could be open as planned.
"It wouldn’t be that big of a deal, except for that cafeteria,” Carlson said. “Without that we’ve got a lot of planning to do.”