A Durham Bridge family is scrambling to find food and shelter for three horses after their barn collapsed on Wednesday afternoon because of the heavy snow on its roof.
Tanner DeMerchant, 15, was sitting on his back deck earlier this week when he heard a loud “crunch.”
He said it took him a minute to realize the roof on his family’s horse barn had collapsed and then his focus turned to the location of their three horses: Ginger, Archie and Ellie.
“I couldn't find her so I thought she was either in the woods or in the barn so I went in and then more of it started falling, and so I thought, that's a bad idea,” DeMerchant said.
Fortunately, the horses weren't in the barn and they are all fine. But their shelter is gone along with most of their hay.
The family also lost a canoe, a kayak and their horse saddles.
That isn’t the only bad news. The barn cost $3,000 when it was built eight years ago.
Robert Lemon, DeMerchant’s father, said the family just learned their insurance won't cover the loss of the barn.
This is putting pressure on the family to find a home for their horses until they can replace the barn.
“We got to do something. We'll figure it out, maybe a little bit at a time over the summer cause they'll be down in the pasture, I hope, in another month and a half and then we'll start cleaning up,” Lemon said.
“It probably won't be as big as this one, this was a good-sized barn.”
Offers of assistance are coming in from family and friends to help them find a spot for their animals.
In the meantime, Lemon is warning others about the heavy snow that has been piling up on roofs for the past several weeks.
“Clean it off and check your insurance, make sure you have snow damage on your barn because we had fire damage and wind, but no snow,” he said.
The weight of the snow has caused other roofs to collapse in recent days.
The roof of a large storage barn in Fredericton's Odell Park collapsed on Wednesday night under the weight of snow.
The large barn was the former home of the Fredericton Pony Club and used by the city to store equipment used to maintain parks.
As well, the Best Metals building in a Fredericton industrial park also lost its roof earlier in the week.
A winter storm earlier this week blanketed parts of New Brunswick with roughly 40 centimetres of heavy snow and ice pellets.