Swimming Pool Roof Collapses in Portland, Oregon

PORTLAND, Oregon, January 7. DURING the worst winter storm in recent memory, the suspended plastic dome roof of the swimming pool at the Metro Family YMCA collapsed yesterday under the weight of heavy ice and snow. Fortunately, nobody was injured.

The roof was a custom-made, heavy-gauge wire-reinforced plastic dome, which was suspended by warm air. The dome roof was constructed in the 1970s, and has durably housed the 6-lane, 25-meter pool for many years. However, it now appears the roof dome is damaged beyond repair.

The accumulated weight of the snow, sleet, and freezing rain first caused the roof to sag in the middle. Then, it started to tear along the edges. Currently, it is shredded and torn in several places, and is laying on top of the surface of the pool. Many swimmers in the greater Portland metro area, including almost 100 age-group and Masters swimmers, will probably be homeless for a while.

—Bill Volckening

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