© 2024 WXPR
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Risk To Human Safety At Former Phelps Hospital: Judge Nielsen

Ken Anderson photo

After viewing a video of the interior of the former Phelps hospital and hearing testimony for more than two hours, Vilas County Judge Neal Nielsen, III ruled there is a risk to human safety saying “the video speaks for itself and it is a significant human health hazard; nobody should be inside that building,”

The former hospital is owned by TomCatHolding, LLC with Colin Crawford listed as the registered agent. Crawford said he bought the 75,000 square foot complex for $1 after the former owner “stripped it out” removing copper wiring and anything of value. Crawford indicated the estimated cost to demolish the building is $200,00 to $300,000.

Vilas County officials designated it a human heath hazard with a default judgement and a hearing set for August 6. A special inspection warrant allowed officials to enter the structure where a video and still pictures were shown to the court. Dan Dumas of Kim Swisher Communications testified on the health hazards. “There are multiple trip and fall risks, glass all over, documented bottles and cans with chemicals, mold, standing water, moss, and black mold. There were soda cans, snack wrappers, graffiti, and no lighting.” He concluded saying “In my opinion there have been people who have entered the building.”

Judge Nielsen said safety was his main concern indicating “anyone who enters is in danger of being harmed” and was most concerned about the area of roof collaspe. He allowed the special inspection warrant to continue and gave Crawford 30 days to fence that area in and to make sure all doors and windows remain closed.

Up North Updates
* indicates required