Sunday, July 30, 2017

1 person dead after powerboats American Ethanol CatCanDo and Miss GEICO collide at the St. Clair River Classic in Michigan

Miss GEICO and CatCanDo involved in fatal crash at powerboat races
Nicole Hayden, Times Herald 

Updated 9:14 p.m. ET July 30, 2017


The St. Clair River Classic offshore powerboat races came to an abrupt stop Sunday after two powerboats collided, leading to one fatality.

The two boats involved in the crash were American Ethanol CatCanDo and Miss GEICO, both from the Extreme division, said St. Clair County Sheriff Marine Division Lt. Paul Reid.

Reid could not confirm the name of the deceased racer though. Reid said the man was transported to St. John River District Hospital in East China Township where he was pronounced dead.

Reid said other racers had minor injuries but were not transported to the hospital.

St. Clair County Sheriff Sgt. Scott Jones said the crash happened around 5:30 p.m. Jones said the race was black-flagged, or cut short, following the accident.

Reid said the crash occurred in the north turn of the race, but does not yet know what led to the crash. Both boats were removed from the water and loaded on trailers to allow investigators to start analyzing the events. As of Sunday evening, investigators were interviewing boat drivers and taking photos of the involved vessels.

St. Clair Police Chief Rick Jefferson said the crash happened during one of the last races of the day.

The incident is still under investigation.

Prior to the crash

Prior to the crash, the event was a family-friendly affair not just for local fair-goers, but for racers as well.

Many boats had father-son duos while there was one spousal team.

Jason Saris, 60, of New York, races a 32-foot Cobra powerboat with his son Johnny, 24. While Jason began racing in 1982, his son soon followed suit once he turned 16.

“It’s awesome racing with my son,” Jason said. “There are not too many parents that get to do that with their kid. It’s an activity that we can continue to do together even as he gets older…It gives us mutual respect for each other too. Everyone loves their family, but not too many are this hands-on and able to see what the other is able to accomplish so closely.”

While Jason handles the throttle, his son drives the boat – an experience, Jason says, is all about focus, concentration and team work.

About 35 teams came to participate in the race hailing from across the country. Teams traveled in from New York, New Jersey, Maine, Massachusetts, and Connecticut, among others.

Frank Vecce, Offshore Powerboat Association official, said St. Clair continues to be an excellent site to race at and doesn’t have a bad seat in the house.

Noah Krug, 4, of Croswell, was most excited to see the Batman boat race by. He even brought his Batman sunglasses to show his support.

While he loves Batman, Noah said he does not like the bad guys that Batman fights.

Noah’s parents, Jeff and Robin, bring both of their kids to the powerboat races every year because they feel it is a good family activity.

“I like it because it’s fun and out of the norm and a once-a-year-thing that is different for them,” Robin said. “He just wanted to see the Batman boat.”

Joe Meglino, of New Jersey, races with two others on the Jersey Outlaw, a 29-foot Scarab powerboat. Meglino said they enjoy coming to St. Clair each year because the city welcomes the teams and crews like family.

“People are great and hospitable and always welcome us,” he said.

Jarrett Correll, 20, of Ohio, traveled up to St. Clair for the weekend to support two of the racing teams. He said he has been an avid supporter of the sport and was first intrigued by the races because of how fast and powerful the boats are.

Correll’s cousin, Andrew Somers, 36, of Marysville, was watching the races for the first time. He said he comes for the concerts the night before, but was enjoying the sport as well.


ST. CLAIR, Mich. (WXYZ) - The St. Clair River Classic Offshore Powerboat Races came to a tragic end.

Two boats, The American Ethanol CatCanDo and Miss Geico, collided at about 4:40 pm Sunday.

The collision severely injured one man.

The victim was raced to St. John River District Hospital in East China Township where doctors eventually pronounced him dead.

Police say other boaters involved in the crash had minor injuries, but they were not hospitalized.

All boats were removed from the water and the race was halted.

Investigators are looking into the incident.   I am sure that speed has something to do with this.  Speed kills.

Ximena Sierra, 8, suffered a catastrophic head injury when the ATV her father, Artemio Sierra, was driving hit a berm and knocked both Ximena and her sister, Ludwika, 9, off and onto the ground

Posted By: Jon Johnson 

July 29, 2017

Father faces possible homicide charges

By Jon Johnson

Tucson, AZ – Losing a child can be the most devastating tragedy a parent faces. A father knowing that his actions contributed to the death only compounds the catastrophe.

One of the two young sisters who was badly injured recently while riding on the back of an ATV with their father died early Friday morning at Banner-University Medical Center Tucson (UMC).

Ximena Sierra, 8, suffered a catastrophic head injury when the ATV her father, Artemio Sierra, was driving hit a berm and knocked both Ximena and her sister, Ludwika, 9, off and onto the ground. Neither girl was wearing a helmet. Artemio, 33, of Pima, was investigated for driving under the influence of alcohol. He reportedly failed a field sobriety test and admitted to drinking too many beers throughout the day to count.

The crash took place just before 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, July 23, behind a pump storage building in the 9000 block of U.S. Highway 70 roughly 200 yards north of the highway. Deputies noted seeing ATV tracks leading from a flat roadway into a small berm and ditch and multiple spots with blood on the ground.

Artemio brought the girls to the Mt. Graham Regional Medical Center in his father’s vehicle and both were reportedly unconscious, with Ximena not breathing and without a pulse. Emergency Room staff reportedly they managed to restore a pulse to Ximena, and she was airlifted to UMC.

Ludwika was also airlifted to UMC. She reportedly responded well to treatment and has since been released from the hospital.

According to a report from Univision, Ximena was declared brain dead at UMC on Tuesday, and despite her parents desire to give their daughter more time and pray for a miracle, the decision was made to remove Ximena from life support against her parents’ wishes.

Artemio now faces possible homicide charges anywhere from negligent homicide up to murder in the second degree.

Test results showing Artemio’s blood/alcohol concentration are still pending from the Arizona Department of Public Safety’s Crime Lab.

A gofundme account has been set up for the girls and can be found at


Father being investigated for DUI
By Jon Johnson
GRAHAM COUNTY – Two young girls were clinging to life at a Tucson hospital Tuesday after being thrown from an ATV their father was driving, possibly while drunk, Sunday night. 

Ludwyka Sierra, 9, and Ximena Sierra, 8, were both listed in critical condition at Banner-University Medical Center Tucson. The girls were flown to UMC after initially being examined at Mt. Graham Regional Medical Center (MGRMC).
Officers and medical personnel were dispatched to an area along U.S. Highway 70 between Glenbar Gin and the former Cluff Dairy at about 7:33 p.m. regarding an ATV incident. Medical and fire personnel were then canceled after a deputy learned that the injured parties had been driven to MGRMC by their father, Artemio Sierra, 33, of Pima. 

The two girls were first treated at MGRMC before being flown to UMC in Tucson.
According to Emergency Room staff, when both girls were brought into the ER by Artemio, they were limp and unconscious. When Ximena arrived, she didn’t have a pulse and wasn’t breathing. ER staff reported they managed to re-start Ximena’s heart prior to her being airlifted to Tucson, according to the Sheriff’s Office report. 

Ludwyka was still at the ER when the deputy arrived. He reported she had large abrasions to her left leg and both knees as well as abrasions to her face and head. She was shortly thereafter flown out to UMC as well. In a news release Wednesday morning, the Sheriff’s Office reported Ludwyka appeared to be responding to treatment. 

Artemio allegedly told a deputy that the girls had asked to go for a ride so he took them out on his ATV, which he believed was a Honda 400. He said it was getting dark and seemed like it was going to rain when he suddenly he hit a small berm at about 40 mph, knocking his daughters off and onto the ground. They were not wearing helmets. 

Jon Johnson File Photo/Gila Valley Central: At least one of the girls was transported to UMC in this LifeNet helicopter.

Artemio said he found both his girls unconscious on the ground and bleeding. After he managed to get the ATV to start, he drove toward his residence but the ATV died again. He then left his daughters and ran home to retrieve his father’s vehicle, which he then used to transport his daughters to the hospital.
While speaking with Artemio, the officer noted he showed signs of intoxication. When asked, Artemio allegedly admitted to drinking too many beers throughout the day to count. 

Artemio failed a brief sobriety field test and his blood was taken for testing purposes. He was then released to his brother. 

Other deputies located the site of the crash behind a pump storage building in the 9000 block of U.S. Highway 70 roughly 200 yards north of the highway. Deputies noted seeing ATV tracks leading from a flat roadway into a small berm and ditch and multiple spots with blood on the ground.

Deputy Rebecca Joan Raymond, 28, has been identified as one of two victims of the Midfield Aviation 1980 Cessna 172N Skyhawk plane crash south of Big Bear City, California. The pilot Brian White, her fiance, is the second victim.

Deputy Rebecca Joan Raymond, 28, has been identified as one of two victims of the Midfield Aviation 1980 Cessna 172N Skyhawk plane crash south of Big Bear City, California

Updated 6 mins ago
BIG BEAR, Calif. (KABC) --

A San Bernardino County sheriff's deputy was identified Sunday as one of two people killed when a small aircraft crashed in a remote area of Big Bear.

Authorities were dispatched to the Apple Valley Airport around 10:30 p.m. Saturday in search of a car belonging to the victim, identified as 28-year-old Rebecca Joan Raymond.

The person who called authorities said Raymond and a man were flying from Big Bear and were overdue to land. San Bernardino County sheriff's deputies found the car at the airport and contacted the airport division for help to find the two people.

Authorities began searching the sky between the areas of the Big Bear and Apple Valley airports.

Around 9:30 a.m. Sunday, a crew found a single-engine aircraft down in a remote area of Big Bear Mountain. A flight crew member was hoisted down to the wreckage and found Raymond and the man dead.

Friends said the man was Raymond's fiance, Brian White. Debbie Payne, a close friend of the couple, said Raymond and White met two years ago at a party. White was a pilot with the U.S Army.

Payne said White had rented a plane for the weekend and took Raymond on a trip to Big Bear for their anniversary, where he proposed on Friday.

Raymond worked for the Barstow Sheriff's Station and had been with the department since September 2016.

The FAA and NTSB were contacted and will be assisting the sheriff's aviation division with the investigation.

The cause of the crash was unknown.  Eye witnesses have said that pilot error could be one of the causes of the crash.

One of two victims identified in fatal plane crash near Big Bear
Plane down south of Big Bear City

Jul 30, 2017 Updated 1 hr ago

UPDATE: July 30, 4:30 p.m. — San Bernardino County Sheriff's Deputies are mourning one of their own following a fatal plane crash south of Big Bear City. Deputy Rebecca Joan Raymond, 28, has been identified as one of two victims of the crash. She was a deputy assigned to the Barstow station.

An adult male also died in the crash. His name has not been released pending notification of family.

According to a press release issued by the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department, around 10:30 p.m. July 29 deputies at The Apple Valley Police Department were asked to respond to the Apple Valley Airport. They were asked to search for a vehicle belonging to Raymond.

Raymond and the male (Brian White, her fiance) were flying into Apple Valley and were overdue, according to authorities. The victim's vehicle was found at the airport. The Sheriff's Department Aviation Division was alerted and began a search between Big Bear and Apple Valley airports.

On July 30 the crew of Sheriff's Department helicopter 40King located a single engine aircraft down in the Sawmill Canyon area near Bear Mountain Resort. A flight crew member was hoisted to the wreckage and found the male and Raymond both deceased.

Raymond has been with the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department since September 2016. It's unknown who was piloting the aircraft.

The FAA and NTSB are assisting the Sheriff's Aviation Division in investigating the cause of the crash.

The owner of the plane is listed as Patrick H. Zrelak, 63.  He is the owner of Midfield Aviation.  Midfield Aviation in the Mojave Desert of  Southern California serving pilots since 1980. The FBO is located at the north end of Apple Valley Airport. Midfield Aviation offers flight training, aircraft rentals, hangars and maintenance.  Here is their website:

UPDATE: July 30, 11:21 a.m. — The general manager of the Big Bear City Airport District, Dustin Leno, has confirmed that a single engine aircraft did crash in Sawmill Canyon. It's unknown exactly when the crash took place.

Leno said the single engine aircraft took off from Big Bear City Airport yesterday, July 29, around 2:30 p.m. At some time between then and around 9:30 a.m. July 30, authorities received a signal from an emergency locator transmitter alerting them to the crash, Leno said. It's unknown if the plane crashed shortly after takeoff July 29, or may have been returning to the airport July 30.

Leno would not confirm if the crash was fatal to those on board. He did not identify the type of plane or how many people were on board.

The San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department, the FAA and NTSB are investigating the cause of the airplane crash.

This is an update to an earlier post. See the original below and as more information becomes available, this story will be updated.

Emergency personnel are responding to a plan that apparently crashed in the Sawmill Canyon area of Big Bear City.

The crash site is reported to be about a mile south of Big Bear Airport. There are unconfirmed reports that there are two fatalities on board. It's unknown if the airplane had left Big Bear Airport or was approaching the local airport.

As more information becomes available, this story will be updated.


Two people — including a San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputy — were found dead Sunday in the wreckage of a small plane that crashed Saturday in the San Bernardino Mountains.

Rebecca Joan Raymond, 28, had been with the Sheriff’s Department since September and was assigned to the Barstow station, officials said. The name of the other victim, an adult male, has not been released.

“Feels like yesterday that Sheriff John McMahon swore Rebecca in,” the Sheriff’s Department tweeted. “It’s a tragic and sad day for all of us. May God watch over her parents.”

The search began about 10:30 p.m. Saturday after the two didn’t show up to the Apple Valley Airport — their intended destination — when they were supposed to, sheriff’s officials said in a news release. “An aerial search began immediately,” the release said.

A Federal Aviation Administration spokesman said the victims were in a Cessna 172, a four-seat, single-engine airplane. The cause of the crash is under investigation.

Big Bear City Airport General Manager Dustin Leno said no one saw the plane crash, but some people at the airport saw it flying low after it took off about 2:30 p.m. and became concerned. He said people were searching for any emergency signal, but those can only be picked up within line of sight of the transmitter.

About 9:30 a.m. Sunday, a San Bernardino County sheriff’s helicopter located the crashed plane. A flight crew member was lowered down and found the victims’ bodies.

Leno said the wreckage was off Saw Mill Road about a half-mile south of the airport, in an area not accessible by vehicle.

The FAA and San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department were at the scene Sunday; the National Transportation Safety Board, which also will help investigate the crash, will send personnel soon.

Cessna describes the 172 Skyhawk as “the ultimate training aircraft and the most popular single-engine aircraft ever built.”

Bob Hartunian, 78, of Fawnskin is a pilot who has been using the Big Bear airport for 20 years. He said one witness who saw the plane take off reported that its nose appeared to be too high — something that can lead to a stall.

There are special conditions pilots need to account for when flying in and out of the high-elevation airport, Hartunian said. It’s at 6,752 feet above sea level.

“We’ve had a lot of people go in the lake” when they fail to account for those conditions, he said.

Because the air is less dense due to the higher altitude, Hartunian said, a plane doesn’t get as much lift as it does at sea level. Pilots, he said, also have to make the plane’s fuel mix leaner. Sea-level fuel mixtures can diminish engine performance.

“You flood the engine,” Hartunian said.

Overloading the plane with too many people or too much cargo can make both situations worse, he added.

“It’s really important for people to be aware of air density, to lean your engine and not overload your plane.”


Date: 29-JUL-2017
Time: UKN
Cessna 172N Skyhawk
Owner/operator: Private
Registration: N5381J
C/n / msn: 17273771
Fatalities: Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities: 0
Airplane damage: Substantial
Location: near Big Bear Airport, CA - United States of America
Phase: En route
Nature: Private
Departure airport: L35
Destination airport: KAPV
Departed Big Bear enroute to Apple Valley 7/29/2017, never arrived. San Bernardino County Sheriff helicopter found wreckage on mountain side morning of 7/30/2017. The two occupants on-board the aircraft were fatally injured.

San Bernardino County Sheriff,+501+Valley+Blvd,+Big+Bear,+CA+92314/@34.2611443,-116.8525512,17z/data=!3m1!1e3!4m2!3m1!1s0x80c4b437745a9985:0xd6a2fdebdb8e5803?hl=en-us


Brian White

UH60 A/L Maintenance Test Pilot Commercial Fixed Wing SEL/MEL
Helendale, California
  1. United States Army
  1. United States Army
  1. Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU)


  • UH60 A/L Maintenance Test Pilot

    United States Army
    – Present (2 years 1 month)
  • Army Aviator

    United States Army
    – Present (6 years 10 months)
  • UH60M Pilot In Command

    United States Army
    (2 years 7 months)
    UH60M Pilot In Command at the 101st Airborne Division.


  • Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU)

    Bachelor's Degree, Aerospace: Professional Pilot
  • Ravenwood High School

    High School Diploma, General Studies
  • Brentwood High School

    General Studies

Gerrit Evensen, his girlfriend Heather Riley, Alexis Aaron, and pilot Dean Hutton died after a 1969 Beech 19A Musketeer Sport plane crashed in mountainous terrain mauka Makakilo, Oahu, Hawaii

Dean Hutton, the dead pilot

Gerrit Evensen, and his girlfriend Heather Riley - both died
Alexis Aaron, dead

Gerrit Evensen, and his girlfriend Heather Riley - both dead

Owner of downed plane issues statement after crash 

Updated: July 30, 2017
By Diane Ako


The owner of the downed Beech 19A found Saturday afternoon above the Kunia Loa ridge farmlands speaks for the first time. Fire officials found the wreckage of plane, with tail number N6142N, and say all four people on board had died.

The group had rented the plane from Aircraft Maintenance & Flight School Hawaii, owned by Jahn Mueller. FAA records show the plane is registered to Mueller, who issued this statement Sunday morning:

"I am deeply saddened by this tragic event and my prayers go out to all affected. I don't want to speculate on the cause of this accident as that will be determined by professionals in due time. I knew Dean and he loved flying and had many hours in that airplane. He had an alternator issue several flights ago, and he handled it like a professional, and the aircraft was repaired and returned to service."

The National Transportation Safety Board now takes over the investigation.

Small planes continue to crash and take lives, especially the old ones.  This was a 1969 plane.  Mountain weather is also treacherous.  When you look for trouble, I guess you will eventually find it.  RIP.

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

Four bodies were recovered Saturday from the wreckage of a single-engine plane crash on a remote mountainside above Kunia.

The Beech 19A fixed wing single-engine aircraft, with tail number N6142N, went missing on Friday evening, though the search didn't begin until 10 a.m. Saturday. The craft was found about 3:20 p.m. in an area inaccessible by vehicles.

Friends and family identified the four in the plane as Gerrit Evensen, his girlfriend Heather Riley, Alexis Aaron, and pilot Dean Hutton.

Authorities said the wreckage was found above the Kunia Loa ridge farmlands.

Just before 5:45 p.m. Saturday, the Honolulu Fire Department's Air One helicopter recovered the body of the first victim. All four bodies have since been transferred off the site.

Honolulu Fire Department Battalion Chief Craig Uchimura said three of the victims were found inside the downed plane, while one was found outside.

"The wreckage was in an area that was very remote and inaccessible by vehicle," Uchimura said. "Our rescue personnel had to repel off our Air One helicopter to be inserted on the mountainside. It's pretty treacherous up there."

Family, friends remember those lost

At a staging area at Hawaii Country Club on Saturday, family and friends of the victims were overcome with grief.

Lealyn Toponi, who was friends with three of the victims, said she was supposed to be on the downed plane.

"Alexis asked my boyfriend and I to go on the plane with them on Friday and we weren't able to make it. And so Heather and Gerrit were asked to take our place," she said. "They were just very open and loving people that were just leaders. They were the kind of people that inspired you to try anything."

Evensen, 28, was a graduate of Punahou School. Riley was 27.

Riley's mother said she had been informed of her daughter's death, but declined comment.

The FAA said the aircraft last communicated with air traffic controllers around 6:37 p.m. Friday. At that point, the plane was reportedly near Kaena Point.

Owner of plane linked to crash in June

The plane took off from Honolulu's airport on Friday, and it wasn't clear why the plane wasn't reported missing until Saturday morning.

Officials also said the aircraft diverted from its original flight path.

The plane is registered to Jahn Mueller, who confirmed to Hawaii News Now on Saturday that he owns the aircraft.

In a bizarre twist, Mueller also owned the single-engine, fixed wing Piper PA-28 that crashed June 30 into a stream just shy of Moanalua Gardens. The pilot and two passengers were seriously injured in that crash.

A preliminary NTSB report said the plane had lost engine power shortly after takeoff.

Mueller declined to comment on Saturday's crash, and officials did not speculate what may have gone wrong.

An uncle of the pilot in Saturday's crash said the plane might have had maintenance issues. The uncle said Hutton knew about the issues, but decided to fly it anyway. He didn't say what the issues were, however.

A spokeswoman said the four killed in the crash were friends of Lyssa Chapman, of TV's "Dog the Bounty Hunter" fame, and that their car was recovered Friday night on Lagoon Drive.

"The families are also asking for your prayers," spokeswoman Mona Wood-Sword said, in a statement.


Officials confirm 4 bodies found near wreckage of small plane near Makakilo

Updated: July 29, 2017, 10:17 pm

The bodies of four people, two men and two women, were recovered from the scene of a plane crash Saturday afternoon.

The small, private plane, with tail number N6142N, was reported missing Friday night with four passengers on board.

The Federal Aviation Administration confirmed that a Beech 19 aircraft using visual flight rules (VFR) from Honolulu last communicated with air traffic control at 6:37 p.m. Friday.

The U.S. Coast Guard located the wreckage at around 2:30 p.m. Saturday in a mountainous area above the Kunia farm lots.

There’s no word on how long it might have been there or what condition it’s currently in.

Crews set up a staging area at Hawaii Country Club in Wahiawa. A helicopter retrieved the bodies and brought them back to the area. The wreckage itself has yet to be recovered.

“In this case it’s a very remote area, our rescue personnel had to repel off of our Air 1 helicopter to be inserted into the mountainside,” said Craig Uchimura, Honolulu Fire Department battalion chief. “It’s pretty treacherous up there. We’d be unable to get up there by vehicle, much less by foot. The rescue personnel did not report having any fuel or signs of fire at this time.”

HFD said the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration will take over the investigation. Dean Hutton (Photo: Lyssa Chapman)

A spokesperson for Lyssa Chapman, from “Dog the Bounty Hunter,” said in a press release that the plane was piloted by Dean Hutton with passengers Gerrit Evenson, Heather Riley, and Alexis Aaron. Evenson is a friend of Chapman.

The group was on a round robin pleasure flight, and their car was found on Lagoon Drive.

Chapman and Evenson’s sister Lei Evenson asks anyone who may have noticed anything off the waters of West Oahu last night to contact the police or Coast Guard.

“I’m understanding that this aircraft went out yesterday, but we didn’t find out about it until today because no one knew they were missing, and the owner of the aircraft said they never checked in yesterday. So we found out about it today. So it’s been 24 hours, I’m just guessing now. It’s been a while, they’ve been out there a while,” said Lt. Commander Ron Green, U.S. Coast Guard. “File a flight plan. File a float plan. Let somebody know where you’re going, so that if you do go missing, we don’t have to wait for the alarm.” Heather Riley and Gerrit Evensen (Photo: Lyssa Chapman) =========================

Date: 28-JUL-2017
Time: 18:37+
Type: Beech 19A Musketeer Sport
Owner/operator: private
Registration: N6142N
C/n / msn: MB-413
Fatalities: Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 4
Other fatalities: 0
Airplane damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location: Kunia Loa Ridge Farmlands NNE of Makakilo, HI - United States of America
Phase: En route
Nature: Private
Departure airport: Honolulu Int'l (PHNL)
Destination airport:

The aircraft impacted mountainous terrain mauka Makakilo, Oahu, Hawaii. The airplane sustained substantial damage and the four occupants onboard received fatal injuries.


General Aviation Aircraft Maintenance, Engine Overhauls & Flight Instruction

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When it comes to engine overhauls, we do it all. All engines are assembled in a sterile climate controlled room using your choice of new or overhauled parts. We send you all the serviceable tags including crankshaft, camshaft, connecting rods, lifters, cylinders, gears, engine case and accessories, and we are the only facility in Hawaii with an engine test run-up stand. We specialize in Lycoming and Continental and all overhauled engines come with a complete warranty.

National Grid electric line worker was shocked during installation of a new utility pole in Cheektowaga, NY

National Grid worker recovering after being shocked working on new utility pole
  Updated July 27, 2017

Cheektowaga, NY
 A National Grid line worker was recovering at Erie County Medical Center Thursday after he suffered an electric shock Wednesday while doing work on Glenwood Court in Cheektowaga, officials said.

Cheektowaga police said the man was part of a crew installing a utility pole. He was taken to Erie County Medical Center, police said.

A National Grid spokesman said a worker was injured "in the course of performing his job," and taken for treatment.

"Our employee’s condition has improved since yesterday," National Grid officials said Thursday. "His family is by his side and he is in good spirits. We will continue to support him on his road to recovery."


CHEEKTOWAGA, NY-- The condition of the National Grid worker shocked while working Wednesday has improved.

National Grid released the following statement Thursday:

National Grid is pleased to report that our employee’s condition has improved since yesterday. His family is by his side and he is in good spirits. We will continue to support him on his road to recovery. National Grid is committed to the safety of our employees and continues to review the incident.

The incident happened on Glennwood Court in Cheektowaga.

National Grid released this statement following the incident: “In the course of performing his job, one of our electric line workers was injured. He was transported to the local hospital where he is being treated for his injuries. The safety of our employees continues to be our priority and we are conducting a full investigation. Please keep our employees and their families in your thoughts and prayers.”


CHEEKTOWAGA, N.Y. (WIVB) — Residents living in Cheektowaga’s Glenwood Court neighborhood said they heard a loud boom a few minutes before noon Wednesday, and then their power went out.

When they came outside to find out what it was, they said they heard National Grid workers screaming to call 911.

Cheektowaga police said the worker was shocked about about ten minutes before noon, and was rushed to ECMC. At about 1 p.m., the power pole the man ws installing was left charred and leaning.

The lineman’s condition wasn’t known by News 4 on Wednesday, but his injuries weren’t believed to be life-threatening.

National Grid confirmed the man was being treated for injuries.

On Thursday, News 4 learned the man’s condition had improved. National Grid said “His family is by his side and he is in good spirits.”

The company declined to say what the lineman was doing when he was shocked, other than he was injured while performing his job duties.

In a statement, a spokesman for National Grid said the safety of their employees continues to be their priority and that they’re conducting a full investigation.

Cheektowaga police will conduct a separate investigation, following state protocol that requires law enforcement agencies to investigate industrial accidents.

Representatives from Occupational Safety and Health Administration said the agency is investigating. Workers were at the scene Wednesday afternoon, and are expected to interview the lineman once he’s released from the hospital.

An estimated 256 National Grid customers were without power until approximately 5 p.m.

ClubLink Corporation ULC, a corporation that owns and operates golf courses, pleaded guilty and was fined $50,000 after a young worker was injured by a wood chipper.

ClubLink Fined $50,000 After Worker Injured
July 24, 2017 11:46 A.M.

Ministry of Labour

MILTON, ONTARIO - ClubLink Corporation ULC, a corporation that owns and operates golf courses, pleaded guilty and was fined $50,000 after a young worker was injured by a wood chipper.

On May 27, 2015, two ClubLink workers were operating a wood chipper at RattleSnake Point Golf Club Limited located at 5407 Regional Road 25 in Milton. The first worker started the chipper and began feeding wood while the second looked for a place to put down a coffee cup. Placing the cup near a vent on the back of the chipper, the second worker tried to feel if air was coming out of the vent that would knock the cup over. The second worker's hand was pulled into the vent and injured.

A Ministry of Labour investigation determined that a guard that should have prevented access to the vent was not in place at the time of the incident. This was in violation of section 25(1)(b) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

Clublink Corporation ULC was fined $50,000 by Justice of the Peace Margot McLeod. The court also imposed a 25-per-cent victim fine surcharge as required by the Provincial Offences Act. The surcharge is credited to a special provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.

Court Information at a Glance

Provincial Offences Court/Ontario Court of Justice
491 Steeles Ave East
Milton, Ontario

Justice of the Peace Margot McLeod

Date of Sentencing:
July 20, 2017

ClubLink Corporation ULC.

Occupational health and safety

Occupational Health and Safety Act
Section 25(1)(b)

Crown Counsel:
Katherine Ballweg