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Roof partially collapses at NYC Best Buy storage unit

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Part of a roof at a Best Buy storage unit in Queens collapsed Monday night, knocking out a gas line, officials said.

The collapse happened around 7 p.m. inside the warehouse for the big box store at 32-49 49th Street in Long Island City, the FDNY said.

“We found that the roof collapsed in, kicked out the side wall and took out the gas line,” FDNY Battalion Chief Brian Deery of Battalion 49 said at a press conference.

About 25 feet of brick wall collapsed into the adjacent parking lot, according to the city’s Department of Buildings.

Con Edison was called in to turn off gas service to the building, and the sprinkler system was also damaged, the agency said.

FDNY responded to a partial roof collapse at the Best Buy in Long Island City.
FDNY responded to a partial roof collapse at the Best Buy warehouse in Long Island City on March 1, 2021.
Wayne Carrington

At first, officials thought an explosion may have been responsible for the destruction, Deery said.

“But upon further investigation, if an explosion like that happens, you’re going to have more damage, more structural damage,” the battalion chief said. “You’re going to have side walls blown out, you’re going to have roll down gates blown out, so we kind of figured it was just that the collapse knocked out a gas line.”

Monday March 1, 2021
Queens NY
Partial roof collaspe occupied retail store Best Buy
At first, officials thought an explosion may have been responsible for the destruction.
Wayne Carrington

No one was hurt, as the storage facility was closed for the day, according to Deery.

Buildings officials said the rest of the building is structurally stable and does not pose an imminent threat to the public.

Monday March 1, 2021
Queens NY
Partial roof collaspe occupied retail store Best Buy
About 25 feet of brick wall collapsed into the adjacent parking lot, according to the city’s Department of Buildings.
Wayne Carrington

The department ordered the owners to retain a professional engineer and submit a full engineering report to the DOB on the structural integrity of the building, and come up with plans to repair it.

The department also issued a violation to the owner for failure to properly maintain the storage building.

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