By Konstantine Fekos
The old 911 communications tower is officially a thing of the past.
Contractors removed the roughly 30-year-old structure from its resting place near Gate 5 at the Crawford County Fairgrounds Monday afternoon, ushering in the age of its nearby replacement, already in full service.
Transfer of communication abilities ended this past spring when the last non-emergency service was switched over to the new tower.
Both towers are approximately 180 feet.
Crawford County Office of Emergency Services personnel reported the old tower was deemed too weathered for further use about four years ago.
“There was a study done by the county back then,” said Kevin Nicholson, county 911 director. “It was determined that the tower was twisted by the weather and would cost more to repair than replace.”
Plans for the current, self-supporting tower began roughly two years ago, Nicholson said, and emergency frequencies were transferred upon its construction.
The old tower was cut into three pieces and lowered by crane Monday afternoon. Emergency officials expect county workers to further reduce the tower and sell the parts as scrap metal.
The removal of the old tower is expected to free up some space and alleviate concern on the fairgrounds because it was rooted to the ground by steel cables, secured at three different points around the tower.
“Now we won’t have to worry about anyone being around the guide wires during fair week,” Nicholson said. “We’re just better off with the new structure. It will basically last indefinitely.”
Konstantine Fekos can be reached at 724-6370 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.