A fabric dome at the University of Maine has succumbed to the elements after a storm blew through Orono on Thursday, bringing with it torrential rains, ice, snow and high winds.
According to Bangor Daily News, this is the second time in three years that the Mahaney Dome at UMaine has collapsed the pressurized, air-filled structure.
The UMaine softball team was practicing inside the dome when it collapsed.
“It wasn’t a dangerous situation. We had plenty of time to get out,” said head softball coach Mike Coutts.
The Mahaney Dome has since been repaired and reinflated.
This is what's left of the Mahaney Dome at UMaine. The heavy snow caused the roof to collapse. pic.twitter.com/IrRWZ1n1pc— Samantha York (@samanthayorkME) December 30, 2016
“Any time you have a fabric structure, you run the risk of it being damaged,” UMaine Athletic Director Ken Ralph said. “The facility staff has done a nice job [repairing the tear]. It is obviously a key facility. So many [varsity] teams and club sports, students, and community members use it.”
The facility was built with a $1 million gift from late UMaine benefactor Larry Mahaney.
The dome collapsed for the first back in 2007, when it took two weeks to get it repaired and up and running again. The facility is in use 18 to 19 hours per day during the winter.