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#148957 - 05/29/03 07:12 PM Utilities worker shocked east of Grand Island
SAFTENG Offline
Member

Registered: 09/04/01
Posts: 142
Loc: Cincinnati, OH, USA
Utilities worker shocked east of Grand Island

By Gretchen Fowler Publication Date: 05/29/03

A Grand Island Utilities Department worker was shocked shortly after 11 a.m. today when he apparently grabbed a wire he shouldn't have. Bob Smith of the Utilities Department said crews were working at a home on Hermitage Place, just west of the Hall/Merrick county line, when the accident occurred. He said city employee Pat Bittner grabbed an energized wire he thought had no power to it. Smith said it appears that the charge went in Bittner's arm and out through his knee. He said Bittner, who was taken to St. Francis Medical Center, was up and walking around after the accident happened but had blistering burns on his arm. "We're extremely grateful, I think, that nothing worse happened. This crew is always very safe, and we take all the precautions we can," Smith said. "I don't know why that wire was energized." Donald Kohtz of the Grand Island Rural Fire Department lives about five blocks from where the accident happened. He said he was cleaning his pool when he heard what sounded like a shotgun. Shortly after, he said, his pager went off. Kohtz said there was no explosion, but added, "The arch of the short circuit will make it sound like an explosion." Neighbors as far away as Bismark Street said they lost power when the accident occurred. The Hall County Sheriff's Department is investigating the incident.

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#148958 - 05/30/03 04:31 AM Re: Utilities worker shocked east of Grand Island
txsparky Offline
Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 578
Loc: Magnolia,.Texas U.S.A.
Trumpy,
Besides the obvious things like testing for power on the line, what does the liney do to insure that the line does not become energized ? Like LOTO.
_________________________
Donnie

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#148959 - 05/30/03 12:32 PM Re: Utilities worker shocked east of Grand Island
golf junkie Offline
Member

Registered: 04/22/01
Posts: 511
Loc: York, NE
Wow, this is very close to home and I heard about it first on ECN!

GJ

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#148960 - 05/30/03 03:01 PM Re: Utilities worker shocked east of Grand Island
Trumpy Offline

Member

Registered: 07/05/02
Posts: 8540
Loc: SI,New Zealand
Guy can't have had his Line gloves on!,
It's accidents like this that really get my goat, just ignorance to basic safety measures.
txsparky,
Standard safety practice means that after the line(s) has been isolated and tested to ensure proper isolation of the correct system, Earthing clamps and bonding wires are attached to the line and these are fitted to a temporary Earth point(driven stake).
All Air-Break Switches and other such devices on the same section of line are multiply padlocked in the open position and tagged.
When the work is finished, the earths are removed, phasing checks are done and every worker at the site will remove thier personal lock from the switches, etc.
The beauty of the multi-tag system is that the work cannot be re-energised until ALL of the people at the job have finished and have removed thier tags/locks.
Hope this helps, Donnie.

[This message has been edited by Trumpy (edited 05-30-2003).]
_________________________
Let's face it, these days if you're not young, you're old - Red Green grin

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#148961 - 05/30/03 09:30 PM Re: Utilities worker shocked east of Grand Island
txsparky Offline
Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 578
Loc: Magnolia,.Texas U.S.A.
Thanks Mike,
So it sounds as though all of these safety measures were not followed.Someone took a shortcut that cost a man his life.

[This message has been edited by txsparky (edited 05-31-2003).]
_________________________
Donnie

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#148962 - 06/01/03 12:46 AM Re: Utilities worker shocked east of Grand Island
Trumpy Offline

Member

Registered: 07/05/02
Posts: 8540
Loc: SI,New Zealand
txsparky,
Over here,
You are not allowed anywhere near lines, poles, transformers or even an ABS without a minimum of Gloves, safety glasses and hard-hat.
 Quote:
We're extremely grateful, I think, that nothing worse happened. This crew is always very safe, and we take all the precautions we can," Smith said. "I don't know why that wire was energized."

Well how did this happen then?.
_________________________
Let's face it, these days if you're not young, you're old - Red Green grin

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