HOLYOKE, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- Loud booms heard by residents this morning in the South Hadley/Granby area were explosives going off at the former Mt. Tom Power Plant in Holyoke where demolition work is taking place.
Holyoke Fire Department Captain Kevin Cazagnac confirms a remediation company took down one of the structures at the former plant, using explosives because it was the safest method.
This was at about 8 a.m. Sunday.
"One structure that they had to take down by mechanical means and the safest way to take it down was to blast out the supports," Cazagnac explained to Western Mass News.
He confirmed with us that the controlled demolition work was permitted and planned for.
Police shutting down a section of Rt. 5 in Holyoke nearby while the explosives were used to demolition the structure.
Cazagnac reports the railroad that goes by was closed down as well.
The demolition work of the former Mt. Tom Power Plant is happening in the area of 200 Northampton Street.
Police have since reopened Rt. 5 to traffic.
We're told there was some notification to the public, but it was not specific as to exactly when the demolition work today would occur because of safety concerns.
"Some community outreach did go out to people on the South Hadley side and the surrounding businesses and homes that were in the area prior to this today. (But)...they didn't want a crowd down here, obvious safety concerns," Cazagnac explained.
Now that the blasts are over an inspection of the site is being done.
Cazagnac says he believes a solar field that is next to the plant will be expanded into the area where this work is being done.
Further details about the project weren't immediately available.