Dynamite search closing roads

A search for buried dynamite will block off some streets in Carson City this morning.

The Douglas County Bomb Squad will be at the corner of Roop and Second streets at 9 a.m. attempting, for the second time in as many years, to locate an alleged hidden cache of dynamite buried in the spot by a miner some 20 years ago.

Demolition on the site in preparation for a business complex by Metcalf Builders was stopped after new information came to light about the location of the mystery dynamite. The unnamed miner's home, since demolished, once stood on the spot.

"Two years ago we did a dig at this location that is now under demolition in the area of Roop and Second streets," said Chief Deputy Scott Burau of the Carson City Sheriff's Department.

That search in January 2000 turned up empty.

"Tuesday we received information from a citizen who had as close as you can get to firsthand knowledge that the dynamite is there," said Burau. "This time, the location is dramatically different than we had a few years ago."

The search will block off Roop, Harbin and Pratt streets between Fifth and Second streets and Second Street will be blocked from Valley to Harbin streets.

People parking in the rear lot of the Carson City Courthouse, and those in businesses immediately behind the location of the search, are asked to park elsewhere, Burau said.

He estimates the time of the closures to be two hours.

"With this renewed information we are going to make one last concerted effort to grid off the area of concern and check it extensively before we allow the contractors to do anymore demolition work," Burau said. "If in fact the dynamite is there, we don't know the stability or instability of it which causes sufficient enough concern that we'd rather err on the side of caution."

Burau said why dynamite would be buried there is unknown.

"How it ended up on the property is immaterial at this point. But if it's there, we want to remove it."

In the last search crews sought an estimated 60 pounds of emulsion material. The relatively safe material is used to break rock in mining operations.


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