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Two injured in New Market shelter collapse

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Rich Cooley/Daily Two people were injured Thursday morning after this picnic shelter roof under construction at Shenandoah Valley Academy in New Market crashed onto the crewmen. Rich Cooley/Daily

By Joe Beck - jbeck@nvdaily.com

A building collapse Thursday morning on the campus of Shenandoah Valley Academy in New Market sent two men to a hospital, according to Shenandoah County officials.

Shannon Johnson, a service assistant with the county's Department of Fire and Rescue, said the collapsed building at 234 W. Lee Highway was a school picnic shelter that was under construction. Johnson said the injured men were taken to Rockingham Memorial Hospital in Harrisonburg by ambulance. She had no further information on their names or the seriousness of their injuries.

Johnson said ambulances were dispatched to the academy after an emergency call at around 9:05 a.m. They arrived to find the picnic shelter in "full collapse," she said.

Johnson said rescue workers were joined by a county building inspector and an official from the U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration after their arrival.

Tim Ferguson, acting building official for Shenandoah County, said the two injured victims, both men, are construction workers.

Ferguson said the exact cause of the collapse remained undetermined. But, he said, the collapse was preceded by a minor mishap at the work site. He said workers at the site were pouring concrete "and the chute on the back of the concrete truck bumped into one of the support posts. The structure just toppled."

Ferguson said the roof of the 1,260-square-foot-structure remained intact after the collapse. He said the collapse remains under investigation. He said the remnants of the structure will remain at the site "until the insurance companies have done their part."

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