Another Rip In Dome Causes Evacuations

By Pat Kessler, WCCO-TV

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Another hole in the roof of the Metrodome forced an emergency evacuation on Wednesday night.

It happened shortly after 6 p.m. when WCCO-TV crews were inside as it happened. Reporter Pat Kessler said he was finishing up a live shot when he heard a loud crash and saw tons of snow dumped onto the field.

Many of the workers who were already repairing the other rips were just looking up at the roof and didn’t appear panicked. A few moments later all of them walked off the field.

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission said that all workers were taken off the field because it was not a safe situation. They said it was an emergency when the roof panel opened up.

The question on people’s minds now: ‘How many more of the panels are filled with snow, ice and water and waiting to break down?’

Meanwhile, the roof continues to drip and leak water and the next step for crews will be figuring out what repairs are needed to keep more panels from breaking.

WCCO-TV’s Pat Kessler Reports

More from Pat Kessler
  • Another Rip In Dome Causes Evacuations | PubSub Hub

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  • M B

    I find it interesting that the dome didn’t collapse during the huge storm of Halloween 1991, yet it then had quite a bit more snow (31 inches, right?) than this storm (14 inches).

    What is different this time? Did they neglect to remove snow like they should have? I think that’s the bigger story here.

    • David D.

      The bigger story is a new facility needs to be built or the Vikes will be kicking of the new season in LA 2012. That would be the real neglect and we all will be wishing tax dollars made its way to fund a new stadium.

    • LightenUp

      Moderator- If you’re going to “moderate”, have a little maturity and class. Calling someone’s daughter stupid make you look like a 13 year old forum admin on a pokemon forum. In any case, the comment wasn’t that far off the subject and it wasn’t offensive so lighten up a little and don’t be a jerk.


      These comments are off topic. This thread has been closed.


    • Vigilante

      God is punishing Minnesota for sending Al Franken to the US Senate.

      • bluebutt

        Vigilante has it right!!!

      • Dakota

        i think you are right Vigilante…… Send in the Clowns

      • Pelosy

        So true!

    • Wramblin' Wreck

      If I understand correctly, the fabric is a perfluoroethylene base. 20 years of exposure to UV radiation, ozone, low level NOx and SOx can cause deterioration of the fabric so it is no big surprise this happened now. I predict that they will need to replace all of the fabric this summer.

    • RHO1953

      It has deteriorated since then. Your shingle roof on your house doesn’t last forever, does it? UV radiation, wind, rain, snow, ice, even diesel exhaust from monster truck shows all take their toll. Nothing man made is forever.

      • nittanyray

        When you shingle your roof you put a structure capable of carrying the load underneath the shingles. Would you feel comfortable living in a house that had no sheathing on the roof trusses and just had a tarp draped over the structure. That is basically what they have done at the Metrodome.

    • Moderator

      Did anyone ask about your stupid daughter?? No one cares because this is not about you or a 20 year old snowstorm.

      Stay on topic, people.

    • M

      The difference is 20 years of Minnesota winters. Duh. Stop trying to spread some ridiculous conspiracy theory rumors.

    • Tom

      The difference this time is that it is 19 years older.

      • tsiok

        Yep, pure and simple. Things don’t last forever. Seems like this is happening all over our nation and they didn’t plan for it.

    • Donfiness

      The problem is a wetter much heavier snow than last time.

    • jag21

      The difference is the rate at which the snow came. In ’91, it was spread out over a few days, not an intense 18-20 hour period.

    • keasha nenovich

      1991 was almost 20 years ago, im sure its aged alot since than.

      • chairperson, dept. obvious

        I’m sure it’s aged 20 years since then… just a guess =)

    • Tc Radiodj

      The dome was only made to last 20 years. It now has exceeded that. However, I feel a new stadium is out of order as well. We don’t have a team worth building a new stadium for.

      • Carl D

        Yea and they are making plans to Leave, ah la Northstair, except this time the LA Vikings along with the LA Lakers- not the britest bulb in the room.

      • Freddy58

        The Vikings WILL soon be playing in a new stadium. Unfortunately, it will be in LA. The only time they’ll have to worry about snow out there is when Charlie Sheen takes in a game.

      • D Rock

        The Halloween blizzard of 1991 didn’t pack the same high winds this storm did. The winds were so bad that workers had to be removed from the roof during this storm while the Halloween blizzard was basically three days of snow that just kept falling. Situations were not so dangerous where they had to evacuate people from preserving the integrity of the roof.

      • Nate Hoffmann

        Source? The dome wasn’t only made to last 20 years

      • popkorn

        @Nate Birdair, Inc. the company that designed and installed the roof stated that it has a 20 year lifespan.

      • Wilbur Post

        No problem. Los Angeles will welcome the Vikings. No snow to worry about in LA.

    • Jessica

      Almost MB, Storm of 91 had 28 inches and this year we received 17. Some snow, as you may notice when shoveling, is heavier than other snow. Winds blow, snow drifts and the dome is now 19 years older. There doesn’t appear to be neglect, why must there be someone to point the finger at? Is it a conspiracy? What’s to gain? There were people on the roof attempting to clear the snow, it became to dangerous and they were forced to stop.

      • Robert

        Whats to gain is a stadium with some sound you can hear, that doesn’t sound like someone yelling into a Mr. Microphone.

      • Jessica

        What’s to gain by conspiring that the dome has been neglected. . .not what’s to gain by building a new stadium. Sorry about the confusion. I wish I had the means to build a new stadium, talk about making some money in the long run, I’m in..

      • Idgarad

        What’s to gain? Billions in 0% interest taxpayer money and massive construction contracts.

    • Hank Dodson

      NO NO NO, the bigger story here, is the top is 19 years older than it was in 1991 and it probably has rot in it, and who knows what other wear and tear.

    • Eric

      That was almost 20 years ago, the dome was probably in better shape back then.

  • D

    In 1991 we didnt see the ice storm before the snow fall. That layer of ice adds a lot more weight and does more damage. Now I am not in the Metro so I dont know exactly how much ice there was there… I am speculating. But in an out state area that saw the storm as it headed your way… we saw about a quarter to a half inch layer of ice.

    • Reagan

      No Ice here in the city

  • Mike

    some people with their comments about not building a new stadium because the team doesn’t deserve it because of their record is absurd! An NFL team is not successful every single year. Look at the Niners and Cowboys (they are in San Fran and Dallas for all you Liberals that have no clue about sports) who dominated the past 20 years and now struggle. That didn’t stop Jerry Jones from building. I’d much rather give my tax dollars to something i will enjoy rather than giving it to the Democrats so they can spread the wealth to the people who refuse to get a job.

    • Michael Mulligan

      Mike: And I’d rather keep my tax dollars. Subsidizing billionaires to pay millionaires seems out of place given my income is less that 50,000.

      • J F. Xenos

        You make lass than 50K? Don’t blame us millionaires and billionaires. That has NOTHING to do with it.

    • schumach

      Great post! The libs do not like the truth!

      • whatevs

        @schumach: I guess the play wasn’t that easy then, was it?

        @whomever else: Yeah, the Vikes do need a new stadium. If they don’t get it in Minnesota, they will somewhere else. Save the money, chop the roof off and play outdoors for a year while they build a new one.

      • Now_here

        @whatevs: Great Idea!! peel off the roof & play outdoors

        Unless, of course, Minnesotans can’t handle it like our Wisconsin brethren over in Green Bay….

    • lolatdome

      no NFL team is successful every year. but the Vikings haven’t been successful ANY year.

      love, your neighbor to the east.

      • James Larken Smith

        You were in the NFC championship last year, how is that not being successful “ANY” year?

      • schumach

        They were one easy play from making it to the super bowl last year numbnuts!

      • kiltmaker

        Try living in Cincinnati. worst record in NFL for decades.

    • nfl sucks

      If you want a team that’s never successful, how about the Lions? And they have a new stadium?

  • Bryan

    @ Mike – You have to be a republican to understand sports?

    • schumach

      Yes, liberals only follow the rules if they are in their favor….otherwise they make them up and call republicans racists to deflect their non-rule following.


      Eugene McCarthy said you have to be smart enough to understand the rules, and dumb enough to think it’s important. He was a liberal Democrat , for what it’s worth.

  • Ryan Lazenby

    @Bryan- No…. you have to not be a moron…i.e. not a democrat to understand that the “record” the team holds has NOTHING to do with a new stadium. I say bring on the new stadium. Let it generate revenue, unlike the welfare system that the democrats seem to love so much.

    • Big e

      Ryan so you are a conservative which means you are against wasteful government spending but then you say you want the city to build a new stadium?

      For someone who is calling everyone an idiot you sir have the most idiotic comments on here.

      And I say this as a conservative.

      • whatevs

        A modern day stadium can be built to be a year round revenue generating facility. See Cowboys Stadium and Lucas Oil Stadium as examples. A new stadium every couple decades is not wasteful gov’t spending. Oh, and let’s not forget the “it’s cool” factor. Everybody likes to have nice things in their city, this one just happens to also be economically feasible if handled properly.

  • EdW

    > why not have no roof at all?

    Perhaps because it’s an INDOOR environment? You’ll get rain and snow and cold in places that aren’t expecting it since it’s normally around 70 degrees inside. They may even have interior paint instead of exterior paint in places. You’d have a disaster if you suddenly opened it up to the elements just like you would if you suddenly took the roof off of your own house. Pipes will certainly freeze.

  • Random Anonymous Blackmail

    I love it when people use the term “liberal” in an argument in an attempt to insult someone who may not share their point of view.Mike there is a liberal mind set and the Liberal party, know the difference before spouting the same ignorant comments one would hear from Rush, or his lap dog Glenn Beck.

    • ncaanan

      Either way….the bell is tolling sweepingly for liberalism. And no, I don’t watch Fox News or listen to talk radio.

      • Jessica

        Maybe you should. . .listen to MPR and quit being brain washed.

      • blah

        The only problem with socialism is you run out of other peoples money…

      • whatevs

        @ Jessica: I can’t find MPR anywhere. Instead, I’ll just gather my information from various sources and make up my own mind. Enjoy your spoon-feeding though. :-)

    • donfiness

      Wow! you listen to Rush & Glen Beck!

  • Monie


    i think it was 17.1 inched this round, and the one in 91′ was 28 inches. Some people also dont realize that they hosed water on top of the dome to get rid of snow, but it didnt work that way. It turned to ice weighing the top down, and well now we have a major problem.

  • Diehard Independent

    Do the people deserve the $9.1M generated with each game? Mind you these numbers are based on seating of 65k people and a new stadium would hold 10-20K more AND allow us to be eligible by the NFL to hold a Super Bowl. Its not rocket science people, just do the numbers, oh wait Republicans don’t do numbers or they would see that 98% of the US makes less than $250k a year in taxable income. Or maybe you would just rather pay more tax to offset for the 2% of the wealthy people to have more toys while your NEIGHBOR, the middle class and poor struggle to buy food for their children. Ignorance is bliss. . .Republicans and Demorcrats are uneccessary evils. . .the truth is in the people. GO VIKES!

    • Dougie

      Who the hell are you to tell those who have earned over $250K that they should pay more when over half the people in this country don’t even pay ANY income taxes?

      If ignorance is bliss, you must be in seventh heaven…

      • Diehard Independent

        Isn’t it those people who make over $250k a years job to supply those others with jobs (or that’s the republicans arguement as to why their taxes shouldn’t be raised)? I believe everyone should contribute a percentage of earnings. The rich find whatever loop hole they can to get out of taxes, ie hedge funds and other non taxable income. . .I’m not ignorant and you are a fool.

  • Hannah

    LOL my goodness…liberal = no clue about sports what a dumb thing to say. Why doesn’t anyone view building a new stadium as an investment, when you put your money away or towards something, it will pay off. Doesn’t anyone against the stadium invest your money in anything? Why not invest in our beautiful state. A stadium will pay for itself and the income the state receives from having it will increase millions and millions of dollars. And as mentioned above, we’ll host a Super Bowl upon completion which will bring at least $200 million in the week it’s in town! Open your eyes people and invest in our state if you love it! Contact your legislators and tell them we need a new stadium plan next session.

  • Bill

    Certainly this is a “shovel ready project”.

  • fran

    It’s clear that the Dome is nearing the end of its useful life. With the team saying they won’t renew the lease, we need a stadium solution. Why not use money from a racino to pay for a new venue? The money would be totally voluntary. If you’re opposed to a stadium or don’t gamble, your money doesn’t pay for the stadium.

  • Other

    “know the difference before spouting the same ignorant comments one would hear from Rush, or his lap dog Glenn Beck.”

    Talk about the pot calling the kettle black!!

  • Bella Dirche

    Methamphetamine, rednecks and abused wives abound in Minnesota. In contrast, try to find an intellectual, a warm smile, or even a warm day, and you will find yourself on a ceaseless task. If a lifeless existence in a frozen flatland is what you seek, than Methasota is your place. Dislike Mountains or the ocean, than this is your paradise!

    • Jessica

      Top 10 cities in the US for meth use are Phoenix, LA, Chicago, Denver, Orlando, Atlanta, Boise and Little Rock. . .none of which are in MN.

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  • Former Minnesotan

    You Minnesotans better figure a way to lure private money into the state. Right now over 70% of state residents are living entirely off public sector. I escaped the ridiculous levels of taxation and government over 20 years ago and I’m sure it’s a lot worse than when I left.

    Good luck with that.. you betcha’, fer sure!

  • Jane

    Wow Bella that’s generalizing so many people and pretty mean. You’ve never been to my neighborhood or my hometown. I don’t go anywhere without my smile! Merry Christmas to you and yours! I wish so badly that people could at least be nice during the Holidays if nothing else.

    • No One Outside of MN Likes MN

      I like what Bella said. Minnesota is a tragic waste of federal tax dollars.

  • Former Minnesotan

    Oh, I forgot, “yaw, yaw, you betcha’, fer sure”

    • Jessica

      Are you racist too?

      • ncaanan

        Liberal idiot alert.

    • Jessica

      And we don’t talk that way, thanks for stereotyping us.

  • ncaanan

    You’re an idiot.

  • Monaco

    Wow.. I am in New Mexico and we would LOVE to have an NFL team here. Sure seems like you all dont really appreciate what you have, no wonder teams always leave.

    • Jessica

      They don’t leave, they are sold. Do your research, get it right.

  • defaxxer

    So they call it an ’emergency evacuation,’ yet the ‘workers didn’t seem panicked and walked off the field.’ What a great example of how the media likes to sensationalize things.

  • jnsesq

    Gotta wonder about the “genius” of the design of a “soft” roof in a place that gets Siberian snowfall. Just surprised it took this long.

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