Electricution at Mill

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Worker dies at Smurfit-Stone - March 11, 2009
By Shannon Malcom, News-Leader

A 38-year-old Fernandina Beach man died Tuesday night after he apparently was electrocuted while working at the Smurfit-Stone Container Corp. paper mill.

Emergency workers were called to the scene about 11:20 p.m.; co-workers of Daniel Madison Bowen Jr. were performing CPR when paramedics arrived. Rescue workers took over resuscitation efforts and transported Bowen to Baptist Medical Center Nassau, where he was pronounced dead.

A Fernandina Beach Police Department detective is investigating the incident.

According to a police report, Bowen's coworker, Scott Miller, said he was working with Bowen taking cooling fans out of service by disconnecting the power to the circuit breaker - he told police the procedure to shut down the power should not have required any exposure to high voltage.

Miller said he left to perform other work, then drove by the area about 30 to 45 minutes later and found Bowen lying on the floor, unconscious and not breathing. Miller called for help and other witnesses started CPR until rescue workers arrived.

In talking to police, Miller said he noticed a screwdriver on the floor, and he said the access door to the high voltage circuits was open when he found Bowen.

Police could not locate the screwdriver later, but took pictures and taped off the scene for the investigation.

According to the police report, the case was assigned to Fernandina Beach Detective R. Brizelle and is currently under investigation.

Jeff Romeo, with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, said OSHA is also investigating the accident. He estimated the investigation could take approximately a month.

The investigation is still underway and details haven't been released, but from the sounds of this article several things went wrong. A screwdriver, high voltage and nobody else around when working on live circuits. Could this be you?

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