By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Construction resumes following explosion
Construction officials from McCownGordon provide a tour of the new Special Services Facility on East 10th Street on Tuesday, following the Great Bend USD 428 Board of Education meeting. Great Bend USD 428 Assistant Superintendent John Popp, left, visits with Senior Project Manager Todd Dumler and Site Superintendent Adam Wohlford from McCown Gordon during a tour of the construction site on East 10th St. - photo by Susan Thacker

The explosion last week at a Great Bend residence on East 10th Street that resulted in the occupant’s death also halted construction temporarily at the future Great Bend USD 428 Support Services Building. Some work resumed Tuesday, according to Todd Dumler, the senior project manager with McCownGordon.

Dumler gave a brief report to the school board Tuesday and then offered to take members on a tour of the property at 625 East 10th St. The explosion occurred March 22 at 705 East 10th St. He said the explosion caused some damage at the Support Services site but it was mostly cosmetic. “There’s no structural damage to the primary structural members,” he said. However, “glass on the west side blew out of the building.”

The explosion occurred around 3:11 a.m. and Site Superintendent Adam Wohlford was at the USD 428 site by 6 a.m. 

Construction workers from the various companies working at the site were notified of the job site closure and McCownGordon Construction flew a drone over the site for aerial documentation. A structural engineering firm was contacted for building analysis.

The next days included coordinating site visits with insurance representatives, Structural Engineer Ryan Taylor, and district administrators. On Monday McCowanGordon received clearance to resume work at the building. ComfortPro staff were back on site. Other trade partners will return as soon as they are able, although some had to get to other jobs. McCownGordon Construction is working on a recovery schedule that will be built with input from trade partners, Dumler said.

Assistant Superintendent John Popp said the school district’s insurance representative will be at the site on Friday. Although it is not excessive, there is some damage that needs to be documented, he said.

Dumler concluded that the workers are doing everything they can to hit the original target dates.

The building, formerly owned by Central Power Systems & Services, will eventually house USD 428’s Central Kitchen, Transportation, and Maintenance.