DaVinci Slate Roof Survives Massive Kansas Tornado

As an F4 tornado thundered by overhead on June 11, all Jeff Lord and Karen Hudson could think about was the damage it was surely doing to their home in Manhattan, Kan.

Like all Midwesterners who live with the threat of tornadoes each spring and summer, they expected major roof repairs at best, and a total loss at worst. However, they got a surprise when they emerged from the basement after the storm. Most of the roofs in the neighborhood were damaged or destroyed–but not their roof. In spite of having a large tree lying on it, their DaVinci slate roof was completely undamaged, according to Hudson.

“The insurance adjuster couldn’t believe that there was no damage whatsoever to our roof,” she said. “It took him and his crew an entire morning to remove a big tree off the top of the garage, but the roof was completely intact. He was so impressed that he asked what kind of roof we had, because he wanted one for his house!”

The tornado completely destroyed more than 40 houses in Manhattan, mostly in Lord and Hudson’s neighborhood. Homes on all three sides of their house suffered significant roof damage. A large chunk of debris crashed into their garage door, damaging the cars within–but fortunately for Lord and Hudson, the rest of the house remained intact.

“A tornado doesn’t sound like a train, like everyone says. It’s more like a car driving by, and it’s over quickly. It’s chaos and extremely heavy rain,” Lord said. “I really expected to find hail and rain coming in through the skylights in the roof, but in addition to the roof they were all fine too, which amazed me.”

The destructive force of the tornado was evident in the decimation of the large lot that Lord and Hudson’s house rests on. All of the trees around the house were either ripped from the ground or sheared off by the 180-mph winds. The house now sits on a bare plot of land with a lot of debris, which will take years to completely remove.

“The contrast between the devastated lot and the intact roof of the house that sits on it is a poignant testimony to the power of the storm and the integrity of the DaVinci roof,” said Ray Rosewall, president and chief executive officer, DaVinci Roofscapes®.