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Guardsmen to Fill, Practice Lifts of 1.5-Ton Sandbags

Fargo -- For the first time in the 2010 flood fight, Guardsmen will be working with extra-large sandbags. Tomorrow morning North Dakota National Guard members will be filling the giant, 1.5-ton (3,000 pound) sandbags with a cement truck loaded with sand.

Once about 50 bags are filled, the crew will use forklifts to hoist the bags to ensure the straps will hold during sandbag placement. After the sandbags are filled, they will be staged at the 119th Wing to be used for flood emergencies in the area.

Last year, the giant sandbags were placed aerially on dike breaches in North Dakota, including at the Clausen Springs Dam and after the levee failed by Oak Grove School in Fargo.

WHAT: 1.5-ton sandbag filling and helicopter lifts

WHEN: 9:30 a.m.

WHERE: North Dakota Air National Guard's 119th Wing base

COORDINATION: Be at the front gate of the base (1400 32nd Ave. N., Fargo) at 9 a.m. for media escort.

For more information, contact Penny Ripperger or Amy Wieser Willson at 701-451-2194.

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