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The two men were working on the home as part of a renovation project when the house caved in on itself. According to Owings Mills Patch, surrounding neighbors had reported several times to Baltimore County that the house looked dangerous.
“It just didn’t look steady,” said Jo Ann McGinnis, a neighbor who noticed the structural damage before the collapse, “didn’t look sturdy.”
The men were trapped inside between the collapsed roof and a wall to the home. In normal circumstances, a roof should be inspected at least once or twice a year, but even the professionals are at risk of rooftop collapses if they aren’t careful.
“They were both conscious, talking to the rescuers,” said Lt. Paul Massarelli, of the Baltimore County Fire Department. “Their injuries at this point, they are classifying as multi-system trauma because of the collapse. The exact injuries are unknown.”
CBS Baltimore reports that emergency crews worked for about an hour to free the men. Once freed, the two men were flown to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center.
“They put a roof over top of a roof instead of taking off the old roof first, instead of putting up the new stuff,” said another neighbor Richard Olney. “Me and my neighbor here, we’ve been companioning about it, because it just seemed like they were doing everything backwards, and it seems like we were right.”
According to WBAL TV, it is unclear at this time if the homeowner of the collapsed building will be allowed to rebuild the home or if it will have to be demolished.
Many other neighboring residents voiced their concerns about the house and knew something was wrong prior to the collapse.
“I am not a builder, you know,” said another neighbor Don Wheeler. “You can see the house looked like it wasn’t supported directly.”
“We did try to get the county out here to look at the situation,” said Linda Rapplee, neighbor. “We knew a lot of things were being done that didn’t look safe.”