May 29, 2024

Grain elevator damaged in explosion

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By Reed Anfinson

“There was a big boom that shook our house!” Lynn Swenson wrote in an email to the Grant County Herald, describing the explosion at the Hoffman Pro-Ag Farmers Co-op elevator Friday night. 

“Then the lights flickered several times. Scared me and my husband. Then we saw the elevator was on fire,” she said. The Swensons live three blocks from the elevator.

The Grant County Sherriff’s Office received multiple 911 telephone calls of an explosion and fire at the grain elevator in Hoffman starting at 7:50 p.m. Friday.

The explosion and fire destroyed a building attached to the elevator. The fire and explosion also damaged the elevator. 

The Hoffman Fire Department was the first to respond to the explosion. However, mutual aid was also asked from fire departments in Barrett, Elbow Lake, Herman, Alexandria, Morris, Donnelly, Chokio, Cyrus and Kensington.  Ambulance services from Lake Region and Hoffman were also on scene.  

No injuries were reported, the Grant County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release. It was on the scene as firefighters put out the flames and afterward to control traffic around the scene. 

The Minnesota State Fire Marshall has been contacted. At this time, the cause of the explosion and fire is unknown. The incident remains under investigation, the sheriff’s office said.

In a post on its Facebook page over the weekend, the City of Hoffman was asking people to stay away from the scene because of debris in the streets. 

The elevator also suffered damage in the May 2022 tornadoes that struck western Minnesota.

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