Beware: Ice falling from downtown buildings

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Outside the Capital Center at Illinois and Ohio Streets downtown are bright yellow signs with a simple warning: Caution: Falling Ice.

Now that temperatures are inching up, there is a possibility that snow and ice that's accumulated on rooftops will be falling down.

Pat Sullivan says he's seen evidence of the damage it can cause at one of his own Indianapolis-based hardware stores, where a chunk of ice fell on a wooden patio chair and broke it in half.

"A lot of things can get damaged.  Patio furniture, grills, glass top tables," Sullivan warns.

He also suggests if a homeowner sees wet spots in the ceiling, the problem may not be a leak, but an ice-clogged gutter.  "Our gutters are full, downspouts are full," says Sullivan.   "In this situation, it's not a roof leak but an ice dam."

Sullivan warns it's too dangerous to try to get on the roof to clear it.  It's better just to replace the damaged drywall.

Snow and ice buildup on cars and trucks can pose hazards on the road.  Snow falling off a semi truck at 60 mph could create sudden visibility issues for the cars behind it. 

An INDOT spokesman says it's the responsibility of the driver to clear the vehicle of snow and ice before getting on the road.  State maintenance crews are responsible for bridges and overpasses.

While a warm up is welcome, it also comes with a warning:  Keep your head up.