The domed roof of B.C. Place Stadium collapsed with a loud bang in Vancouver on Friday afternoon, leaving the torn fabric hanging over the landmark facility.
Two City of Vancouver workers told CBC News that there appeared to have been a hole in the inflated roof of the building that is to host the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2010 Winter Olympics.
The roof of B.C. Place Stadium collapsed with a loud bang in Vancouver on Friday. The roof of B.C. Place Stadium collapsed with a loud bang in Vancouver on Friday.
They said they heard some flapping of the Teflon-coated fabric, followed by what sounded like an explosion.
They said they believe the whole internal roof support structure may be gone.
A CBC listener who lives in the Citygate condos near the stadium told CBC Radio he could see a 10-metre tear in the roof, which now looks like a "reverse dome."
Trevor, a part-time worker in the stadium, said he was inside the facility when he noticed that the roof was sagging and was warning other workers about the possible danger when "huge gusts of wind caught the slack in the roof, and it was an intense sound."
He described it as the sound of "elephants running through your living room. It was thunderous."
He said there was a seven-metre tear in the roof that "grew across the bottom and travelled up one side, and there was like the whole corner flapping, the sound was insane."
Paul Walker, who was also working inside the stadium, told CBC Radio said the tear sounded "just like thunder." He said that the air in the dome then started "being sucked out really fast."
He said water started pouring down from the hole in the roof. It has been a snowy, rainy day in B.C., but there's no word on whether that was a factor.
There have been no reports of injuries.
Former CBC journalist Kathryn Gretsinger said the deflated dome was the "strangest sight ever" as she travelled into downtown Vancouver over the Cambie Bridge.
She said there was only a circular rim of concrete visible when looking up from outside.
The stadium, which is home to the B.C. Lions football team, seats 60,000 and was built more than 20 years ago for Expo 86. It has been the largest air-supported stadium in the world.