For Woodward community, man's snowstorm death is a tragedy

Curtis B. Haines died Monday when a roof collapsed in a snowstorm that hit northwest Oklahoma. The fire chief said Haines' death is the first of its kind he has experienced in his career.
BY ROBERT MEDLEY rmedley@opubco.com Published: March 3, 2013
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Curtis B. Haines lived alone on the west side of the city in a house he moved into a few years ago.

And that's where he died when the snow-laden roof of the house collapsed about 5 p.m. Monday.

An oil-field worker who loved to fish, Haines, 71, was in a back room that had been added to the house at 3614 22nd St., authorities said.

Fire Chief Steve Day said roofs in Woodward were covered in 12 to 15 inches of snow at the time.

Firefighters pulled Haines from under the collapsed roof. He was dead at the scene.

Day said he had never before seen a fatality caused by snow collapsing a structure in his 37 years as a firefighter.

“Any situation like this with a loss of life is a tragedy to his family and our community. Since this happened during the storm, it shows what effect the severe weather can have,” Day said.

Northwest Oklahoma was hit hard by the blizzard, and the advance warnings from meteorologists were important, Day said. Winter storm warnings Sunday helped people prepare, he said.

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