Roof collapses in ‘natural disaster’

9-5-13-roof collapse
A portion of the roof on this A-1 Automotive Machine Shop off N. Killingsworth collapsed Thursday, Sept. 5, 2013. (KOIN 6 News)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The roof of a north Portland building collapsed Thursday night in what BOEC dispatch categorized as a “natural disaster.”

Witnesses at the scene said one man was in the A-1 Automotive Machine Shop moments before the collapse. He was able to escape unharmed.

“The fact that he was thee seconds before it collapsed is pretty amazing,” said Lt. Rich Chatman with the Portland Fire Bureau. “He is a lucky guy. We actually sent our technical rescue team out here, with the assumption that we could have some kind of recovery to do.”

This area — like much of the Pacific Northwest — had heavy rainfall Thursday. Roughly a 30-by-30-foot area of the roof on this 1831 N. Killingsworth building failed.

Wires near the building also came down. Nothing caught fire, BOEC reported.

The original call came in at 9:04 p.m. Technical Rescue teams from Portland Fire were dispatched with equipment to handle a structural collapse like this one.

“Fortunately nobody was hurt, nobody was trapped,” Chatman said, “and now it’s just a matter of getting the building fixed.”

As of 11 p.m. Thursday Portland Fire crews had cleared the scene.

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