Traffic diverted for explosives search | NevadaAppeal.com

Traffic diverted for explosives search

JIM SCRIPPS

Traffic was diverted around a two-block stretch of Roop Street and several buildings were evacuated Wednesday while bomb squad officials searched for an estimated 60 pounds of explosives.

A friend of the former owner of a house near the intersection of Second and Roop streets told officials Tuesday to look for explosive material buried in the back yard. He said the owner, a former miner, told him where to look. The owner is deceased.

After nearly three hours of searching with a backhoe, and creating a 15-foot crater, Tahoe-Carson Bomb Squad members weren’t able to locate the material.

“This was a meat and potatoes call for us,” said Tahoe Douglas Bomb Squad Commander Mark Danihel. “The information that we got was that it was 60 pounds of emulsion material buried.”

The material, used to break rock in mining operations, is relatively safe to work with, Danihel said. As a protective measure, bomb experts outfitted themselves with flack jackets and bomb suits.

“If something like that went off, it probably wouldn’t knock over the backhoe, but it could rip off the arm,” he said.

Squad members started digging the hard-packed clay about 9 a.m. When they got closer to the suspected site at 9:45 a.m., several government buildings, homes and businesses were evacuated voluntarily, and streets were blocked between Fifth, Musser and Harbin streets and Pratt Avenue. By 1 p.m. the area was cleared and the street was opened.

The house, which now lies dormant with the windows boarded up, has been owned by the Jones Family Revocable Trust since 1980, according to the Carson City Assessor’s Office. The land is scheduled for development.