That's really sad. While in retrospect, it's really, really stupid to grab an electrical appliance like a microphone while standing waist-deep in water, I can see how it might not register on the mind that a microphone is an "electrical appliance."
The scary part is that I can imagine myself doing the same thing, without even thinking about it.
#58128 - 10/31/0512:58 PMRe: Pastor electrocuted during baptism
There is quite a lot of older P.A. system gear in operation all over the country (and world.) Most of it had a capacitor/resistor combination tying one side of the A.C. line to the chassis for noise suppression.
Bear in mind that most such gear did not have a polarized plug, indeed most came with instructions to the effect of "in the event of excessive hum/noise, reverse the AC plug..."
It would not take much leakage or breakdown of that cap/resis combo to cause a strong or fatal shock. Even if the combo was on the neutral side of the line, there would still be potential for enough leakage to cause this.
A lot of houses of worship now seem to go with wireless microphones for baptisimal pools and other portions of services where there is contact with parishioners.
Normally the microphone would be grounded.
Depends. Older gear, "grounded" to chassis, yeah. But not in the proper sense of the word grounded. Some modern gear uses isolated, electronically balanced inputs. So the shield of the cable (and body of the mike) may or may not be grounded. Take some voltage measurements from mike to a known ground on your next gig and you may be surprised. I've been bit a few times by "hot mikes."
Stupid should be painful.
#58130 - 10/31/0504:20 PMRe: Pastor electrocuted during baptism
... I once got a nice jolt from my guitar amp,a vintage, 2-pronged plug, tube style Ampeg,and the microphone,which was plugged into a different amp(also a 2-pronged plug),and the polarity was reversed... the case,carried current and when my lips touched it....yyyouch!! the circuit was complete,..from the guitar strings,thru my body to the microphone.. Stung like a witch,.. Russ
.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"
#58131 - 10/31/0504:27 PMRe: Pastor electrocuted during baptism
I was onstage doing a comedy routine many years ago, when the 'MC' got electrocuted by a hot microphone. He took off like a Whirling Dervish. That was very, very frightening. He was saved by our quick-thinking Sparks, who happened to be right by the switchgear and shut the power off immediately. No harm, apart from a bruised face where he punched himself hard in the chops, and shock. One sugar cube and off to the hospital, but all ended ok.
Wood work but can't!
#58132 - 10/31/0508:17 PMRe: Pastor electrocuted during baptism
I once got a very good jolt when my lips touched a microphone and my hands were on the guitar,
I screamed a dirty word. Unfortunately it boomed out over the PA system, right into the middle of the Church Fair that we were supposed to entertain. My stepdad taught me about polarity while I was (not electrically) grounded.
#58133 - 10/31/0510:45 PMRe: Pastor electrocuted during baptism