Panic buttons installed in Grand Forks County

The Grand Forks County Office Building. Herald file photo

In a brisk session, the Grand Forks County Commission conducted its business with Bridgie Hansen, county risk manager, giving an update on the "panic button" alarm systems. The new systems are up and running, with 65 alarms located in the county office building, and 59 alarms located in the county courthouse. Four additional alarms were added to the courthouse to be used by the public. The extra alarms were placed in jury rooms, and though not a part of the original plan, were within the allocated budget of just under $40,000.

In other business, the commission approved money for plaques, each at a cost of $20, for award winners of the 4-H Club.

The commission also approved a plan to hire a consultant to conduct a detailed analysis of the historic 113-year-old Northwood bridge, which collapsed on July 22 this year. This is necessary for the county in order to obtain a cost estimate for replacing the bridge. This estimate will then be presented to the insurance company for Larimore-based trucking firm Klass trucking, whose driver drove a loaded 43-ton truck over the bridge, well over the 14-ton weight limit.

Council member Cynthia Pic was absent this session and Tom Ford, director of administration, out as well. State's Attorney Haley Wamstad was off, with Deputy State’s Attorney Carmell Mattison sitting in for her.


Adam Kurtz is the community editor for the Grand Forks Herald. He covers higher education and other topics in Grand Forks County and the city.

Kurtz joined the Herald in July 2019. He covered business and county government topics before covering higher education and some military topics.

Tips and story ideas are welcome. Get in touch with him at, or DM at @ByAdamKurtz.

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