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  Ice storm research

Research is underway at Kemptville College to look at the structural stability of barns and other farm structures in Eastern Ontario as they relate to snow loading. The study will determine why and how failures occurred during the 1998 ice storm and what measures should be taken to ensure that local farmers don't sustain losses in the future. The first phase of the project, which has already been completed, determined factors that led to building failures other than the heavy snow and ice loading during the 1998 ice storm. Factors that were found to be potential problems were:

-- additions to existing farm buildings creating unbalanced loads,

-- foundation failures,

-- poor design and construction methods,

-- missing reinforcements in valleys,

-- certain types of laminated arch buildings and

-- falling ice or snow from a higher barn.

Phase 2 of the project which is now in progress, will examine how prevalent these factors are in surviving farm buildings. As a part of this phase a comprehensive survey of farm buildings will be completed. The results of this survey when evaluated will allow for the assessment of the risks involved to structures if similar roof loadings occur in the future. In order to get an overview of these buildings, both old and new barns as well as other farm structures are being examined.

We would therefore like to ask for the cooperation of farmers in eastern Ontario to allow us to visit their farms to get a maximum number of surveyed buildings on which to base our results. Farmers wishing to be a part of this project are asked to contact Antje Deuschle at 613-258-8336, extension 405 or email at .

Funding for this project has been provided under the Canada-Ontario agreement for the Ice Storm Economic Recovery Assistance Program, Annex A, Assistance for the agricultural Sector and rural Communities in Eastern Ontario. This program is jointly funded by the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario.



Eastern Ontario AgriNews is published on the third Monday of each month. The printed version is distributed free by postal mail to farms in Eastern Ontario, Canada.

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