Benny's building condemned after partial roof collapse caused by strong wind

Jan 5, 2018

There were no injuries when part of the former Benny’s roof collapsed on Thursday during the winter storm, according to Onset Fire Chief Ray Goodwin.

Goodwin said when he arrived on the scene of 3066 Cranberry Highway at around 2:20 p.m., part of the building’s roof heating unit was askew. As the wind picked up, about 20 feet of the roof was entirely flipped over by the wind.

The area has been cordoned off and the building was condemned. It is up to the building’s owner to make repairs or tear the building down.

On Friday, the roof was still in a similar condition that it was left in by responders on Thursday evening.

There wasn’t a large amount of snow on the roof, so Goodwin said he believes the incident was wind-driven.

The pieces of the building hit a wire between two electrical poles, which presented an electrical hazard, so the power was secured, the gas shut off and the building owner contacted. The building was unoccupied when the roof collapsed.

“We were able to alleviate hazards without any real problems,” Goodwin said.

In September, the owners of the Rhode Island-based department store chain Benny’s announced all locations would be closed. The Wareham store was shuttered soon after. The Carpionato Group plans to invest $100 million into redeveloping the vacant buildings.