Hockey Team Escapes Injury in Rink Roof Collapse - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Hockey Team Escapes Injury in Rink Roof Collapse

Roof of the Metropolis Rink in Canton, Mass. collapsed under weight of heavy snow Saturday morning

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    Kids, Parents, Workers Escape Injury During Ice Rink Roof Collapse

    A youth hockey team escaped without injury when the roof of the Metropolis Rink in Canton, Massachusetts, collapsed under the weight of snow Saturday morning, the town's police department confirmed. (Published Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015)

    Coaches and parents are credited with saving the lives of two dozen students after the roof of an ice skating rink collapsed in Canton, Massachusetts.

    It came crashing down with little notice - part of the roof over the Metropolis Rink is now gone.

    "We were like, 'Why are we alive?'" said Norwood Youth Hockey Coach Mike Fanizzi. "We just looked at each other."

    At 7 a.m., the team had just started practicing inside when the coaches heard loud, unusual noises coming from above.

    "Heard a second snap and started screaming - we knew something was so wrong," said Coach Chris Sharkey

    "I immediately started screaming to get off the ice," said Fanizzi. "I just knew that wasn't a natural sound."

    That split-second decision saved lives.

    "There were seven kids that we were staring at that were right underneath where it collapsed, and luckily, Mike's voice just was so loud that it forced them to move," said Sharkey.

    Fifteen seconds later, the roof gave way.

    "Right as we get to probably where the penalty box is, one of the other coaches and a mother went past us, and the roof collapsed right in front of us," said Fanizzi.

    Even though the collapse happened at the other end of the rink, the force of it blew out a wall, creating even more damage.

    Firefighters say heavy snow on the roof brought it down.

    "Every single coach out there did a great job today," said Sharkey.

    Remarkably, no one was injured.

    The coaches say they were just doing what anyone else would.

    "I didn't even think twice," said Fanizzi. "I know none of the other coaches did, either."

    State officials say a site survey had been done at the rink just one day prior to the collapse and there were concerns expressed about the amount of snow on the roof.

    The Town of Canton operates and leases the rink from the state.

    The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation says they have reached out to all 34 non-DCR managed rinks to make sure their roofs are checked.