Heavy snow loads threaten floating northern Idaho homes

AP

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho (AP) Floating homes along a northern Idaho lake are tilting and sinking as a result of heavy snow loads on roofs.

Mark Streater and others work to rake snow off the rooftops of Bayview float homes on Lake Pend Oreille in hopes of keeping the structures out of the water, The Coeur d'Alene Press reported (http://bit.ly/2jvgTku ).

"A half a dozen to a dozen (homes) are not doing too good," said Streater. "It's a good thing it stopped snowing because it's getting critical. Some have sunk 6 inches to a foot or lower and the siding on some is under water. The two-story ones are in the most trouble."

He said that if snow accumulates on one side of a roof more than the other, homes can completely tip over.

Streater said he was asked to shovel by some of the home owners who live outside the area. Most of the float homes are uninhabited during winter.

"Generally, if people live in them over the winter, they are on top of things," he said. "But others seem to forget in the winter that it snows a bunch and don't have their float homes checked on."

Gary Lee said a neighbor called him Monday after he learned homes were tilting. Lee and his son went shoveling on Tuesday.

"You know when the homes start to tilt that it's time to start thinking about things," Lee said. "Some of the homes that haven't been heated have a foot of snow on them. A couple hundred bucks (to shovel) is a lot cheaper than losing your float house."

___

Information from: Coeur d'Alene Press, http://www.cdapress.com

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