The roof of the Triumph Church of God in Christ in Summit collapsed Wednesday. This collapse was the second one in Pike county this week. The first was the JPAC building in downtown McComb.
RELATED: VIDEO: CENTURY OLD BUILDING COLLAPSES IN MCCOMB
Stan McMorris, Chief of the Summit Volunteer Fire Department, said the collapse is a mystery.
“At first when we were called to the scene, we were told there was an explosion,” said McMorris. “But when we got there, there was no fire, no explosion, the windows weren’t blown out.”
McMorris said that while there was a gas leak at the church, there was nothing they could find that would cause the roof to fail and collapse.
“It’s kinda strange when you have a building that was seemingly in good shape that just collapsed,” said McMorris.
While the church was established in 1904, the building was only 16 years old.
“In 2001 it was constructed,” said McMorris. “The State Fire Marshal’s Office is coming. They investigate when something like this happens.”
It could have been much worse.
“We got the call in the afternoon,” said McMorris. “They had service scheduled for 6 o’clock. If they had been there, it would have been tragic.”
The collapse of the church, as well as the collapse of the roof of the JPAC building in Downtown McComb, has prompted McComb Mayor Whitney Rawlings to react.
Here’s a video of the Mayor’s official statement:
Two buildings are condemned, and 15 others have been temporarily condemned.
“Safety is of utmost concern,” said Rawlings. “The area (of the JPAC building) is closed to foot and vehicle traffic. Anyone who violates that is subject to fine.”
Securing the area around the JPAC building could take up to 21 days.
“We’ve re-routed traffic,” said Rawlings. “And temporarily condemned businesses and properties around this area.”
Those business owners are having to temporarily relocate, with only 30 minutes of access to their buildings, scheduled to begin at 6pm Friday.
Dave Hughes contributed to this story.
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