[PHOTOS] House in Tahoe Area, California, Collapses Under Weight of Snow

SnowBrains |
collasped house, truckee
The collapsed house. Credit: Truckee Police

Yesterday Truckee Fire Department, Police Department, and the Town of Truckee Building Department responded to a house that had collapsed under the sheer weight of the snow. Fortunately, no one was injured.

California and the Tahoe region have seen a substantial amount of snow over winter, and this is a reminder that we may be through the worst of the snow storms, but the snow loading continues to impact structures.

Here are the warning signs that there may be too much snow on a roof, deck, or structure:

  • Doors or windows have become difficult to open
  • Cracking in drywall
  • Beam deflection (sagging)
  • Walls or posts out of plumb

If you notice any of these warning signs, please consider contacting a snow removal company, and consider the professional assessments that may need to take place following these storms. The Contractors’ Association of Truckee-Tahoe (CATT) has a database of local and reliable licensed contractors.

For more information, you can also visit the Town of Truckee Building Department’s snow load page.

As of today, April 14th, the Lake Tahoe area has 729″ of total snowfall, doubling the area’s annual average. | Photo: Scott Gaffney IG

According to the UC Berkeley Central Snow Laboratory at 6,900′ on Donner Pass, CA, which has been keeping precise snowfall records since 1946, this season’s snowfall has doubled the median annual snowfall of 360″.

The area has received 729″ of fresh snowfall this winter. The UCB Snow Lab recorded 220″ of snowfall in March.

“This just became the snowiest March ever recorded in Tahoe! The Central Sierra Snow Lab has recorded 220” of snow so far this month.

This is also Tahoe’s third snowiest month ever, behind only January 2017 and February 2019. The record for Tahoe’s biggest winter is only 97 inches away…. will April bring more snow?”

Tahoe Fund

Will Tahoe break the record this year? The deepest winter the Central Sierra Snow Lab recorded was 812 inches in 1951/52. That’s 83″ away, and Tahoe still has half of April to get there.

About the UC Berkeley Central Snow Laboratory:

Located at Donner Pass in the Sierra Nevada, the Central Sierra Snow Laboratory is a research field station of UC Berkeley specializing in snow physics, snow hydrology, meteorology, climatology, and instrument design. Built in 1946 by the (then) U.S. Weather Bureau and Army Corps of Engineers, it is now managed by UC Berkeley.

CSSL has a consistent record of precipitation, snowfall, snow depth, and air temperature for the periods of 1946-1952 and 1957-present. The Lab also has long-term data sets on wind speed and direction, solar radiation, snow temperature, relative humidity, and soil moisture. A wide range of other data has been recorded and used at the lab. 


  • 278% = Percent of Average SWE (Snow Water Equivalent) to Date
  • 2020% = Percent of Average Peak SWE


  • 729″ = Season Total Snowfall to Date
  • 219% = Percent of Average Snowfall to Date
  • 162% = Percent of Average Precipitation (Snow & Rain) to Date


collasped house, truckee
Credit: Truckee Police

collasped house, truckee
Credit: Truckee Police
Credit: Truckee Police

collasped house, truckee
Credit: Truckee Police

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