Explosion at Chester

Chester and LeRoy firefighters wait for the all-clear, after a grain leg exploded at the former Ostrander Farmers Coop in Chester.

Slightly after 2:00 Monday afternoon, Sept. 10, residents of Chester were startled to hear two explosions.

Bob Ullom, who happened to be at Cray Insurance, said, “It sounded like a bin was dropped from about 1,000 feet and landed on the ground. It sounded like metal.”

His supposition was pretty close.

On Tuesday morning, Chester Fire Chief Jeff Wendel admitted a grain leg had exploded but could not give any more details as he was waiting for individuals who are experts in grain legs.

Wendel, who is manager of CHS (formerly Ostrander Farmers Coop), happened to be outside when he also heard the “explosions.” He called 911 immediately. The call went to Mower County and LeRoy Ambulance was called out before Chester Fire Department.

He called Howard County directly and the call went out there was an explosion at Farmers Coop.

One employee was at the dryer site at the time of the explosion and he is safee.

“As of right now,” Wendel stated, “One of the bin sites is out of commission. That’s all I know right now.”


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