Roof of Duluth shopping mall collapses following heavy snow event

March 15, 2023

DULUTH, Minn. — Part of the roof at a shopping mall in Duluth, Minnesota, collapsed early Tuesday as workers were removing several inches of snow that had fallen over the weekend, authorities said.

No one was injured when the roof fell in at Miller Hill Mall about 9 a.m. Tuesday, when most of the mall’s stores were still not open. Everyone in the building at the time has been accounted for, Duluth city spokeswoman Kelli Latuska said.

The building was evacuated and is closed.

Authorities did not say exactly what caused the collapse but it came after the Duluth area received about 12.5 inches of snow over the weekend. Duluth International Airport has recorded more than 116 inches of snow this season — more than 40 inches above normal.

Barnes & Noble manager Scott Skar said he heard a loud noise, “like something rolling across the roof” before another employee said the roof had collapsed.

“And so I went to the mall gate and sure enough, it was very shocking to see — you could see open to the sky. The snow was as tall as the mall roof when it caved in,” Skar said.

Before the collapse, a crew was clearing off the roof but stopped and evacuated when they heard “popping sounds.”