Merchandise ruined after wind rips roof off of business in Bountiful

Posted at 9:09 PM, Apr 15, 2015
and last updated 2015-04-15 23:09:22-04

BOUNTIFUL, UTAH - The owners of the Fashion Corner Warehouse are meeting with insurance adjusters to see how they can salvage their building after high winds blew the roof off Tuesday afternoon.

They say they're grateful no one was injured, but the merchandise inside the store is a total loss.

On Tuesday, around 3 p.m., two employees were inside the store, when suddenly, the roof was gone. The two employees promptly called the store managers.

"I immediately just said, 'Is everyone OK?' That was the first question, and then 'Did the roof really blow off?' I was almost in disbelief," store owner Jeremy Pope said.

"When they called me, they were pretty traumatized, scared, it was very scary, very loud, the wind was still howling and blowing inside," said Julie Macey, a merchandise manager. "There was lots of stuff that dropped, the lights had dropped."

The internal sprinkler system broke, causing water to flood the building. The gas lines, located on the roof, also broke, causing a gas leak.

"I think when you've got a combination of broken gas lines, broken electrical lines, broken water lines, and a gust that came through like that with no roof, that's a bad combination," Pope said.

The owners said store merchandise, worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, is a total loss.

"We have three stores, so when one of your stores goes away overnight, unexpectedly, that's 33 percent of your business," Pope said.

Both owners say, while it's an unfortunate incident, they're grateful no one was hurt.

“Luckily there were no customers at that moment in the store," Macey said.

Property managers hope to be able to rebuild the building, and store owners hope to salvage what they can and then reopen for business as soon as possible.