Posts Tagged ‘Kansas City’

KS: GM Electrical Blast…Arc Flash?

KANSAS CITY, KS:  A maintenance worker has been critically injured in an electrical explosion at the General Motors’ Fairfax Assembly Plant in Kansas City, Kan.  The Kansas City Star reports that the accident occurred at the auto plant early Sunday while a contract employee was working on an electrical substation breaker box. The man was hospitalized with burns on his torso.  GM spokeswoman Lauren Indiveri Fitapelli says Monday that the injured man sustained significant burns, but she did not have his hospital condition.  She says the cause of the electrical accident is under way and that work there was not affected because the plant is shut down until July 16 and running with a minimal staff.  She also says the blast caused only minor damage to the building.

Story via The Republic

MT: OSHA Cites PAR Electric

BILLINGS, Mont. – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Kansas City, Mo.-based PAR Electrical Contractors Inc. for three alleged safety violations following the Dec. 22, 2011, death of an employee who was electrocuted while working on a power line near the town of Two Dot, Mont., approximately 100 miles outside of Billings.
“We are committed to doing everything in our power to prevent tragic workplace incidents such as this from happening,” said Trina Mailloux, acting director of OSHA’s Billings Area Office. “Employers must ensure that workers are protected when working near power lines.”

OSHA has issued citations for two serious violations involving exposing workers to electrocution hazards when they are working in close proximity to energized parts without approved insulating safeguards and failing to discontinue the power line work when high winds made the situation particularly hazardous. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.  Additionally, a citation has been issued for one repeat violation involving failing to keep new conductors under positive control in order to prevent accidental contact with energized circuits.

In February 2007, OSHA cited PAR Electrical Contractors for essentially the same violation identified at a Missouri job site. A repeat violation exists when an employer previously has been cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, regulation, rule or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years.
The citations carry a total of $52,500 in proposed fines. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

Story via OSHA.

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Electrical Accident Leads to Wrongful Death Suit

January 22, 2011 Leave a comment

Kansas City, MO – A wrongful death lawsuit against Kansas City Power & Light and a family has been set for a jury trial in early 2012.

Ronald and Patricia Basta, the parents of the late Joseph Basta, have filed for damages that came as a result of their son’s death on June 17, 2009, when he was electrocuted while doing roofing work. The owners of the house where it occurred, Larry and Judy Blankenship, have also been named in the lawsuit.

A jury trial has been scheduled to start Jan. 23, 2012, in Judge Randall Jackson’s court.

According to papers filed in the case, Joseph Basta was employed by Mike Rose Roofing, which was hired to do roof work on the Blankenships’ home. Standing on top of the roof with two other employees, Mr. Basta had finished cutting shingles and attempted to straighten himself up by placing his left hand on a weather vane connected to the ground.

He came in contact with an uninsulated split bolt connector, the plaintiffs say, and an estimated 200 volts of electricity ran through his body before a co-worker pushed him away. He jumped from the roof to the ground, landing on his feet, and curled up in the fetal position.

Attempts to revive Mr. Basta were unsuccessful. The cause of death was declared as electrocution.

The Bastas hold KCP&L responsible, saying the company should have inspected and maintained equipment supplying electricity to the home. They also allege negligence by the Blankenships for failing to maintain care of electrical equipment issues and not warning about potential dangers.

KCP&L and the Blankenships have denied all allegations, save for one. In an answer, the family admits negligence when it came to inspecting the electrical equipment and providing notice of any issues to the roof workers. KCP&L places blame on the Blankenships, Mike Rose Roofing and Mr. Basta’s co-workers.

“These individuals failed to inspect the electrical equipment, failed to warn Joseph Basta of the potential danger and failed to make the equipment safe before directing (Mr. Basta) to work near (it),” a filing stated.

KCP&L also said Mike Rose Roofing failed to comply with numerous Occupational Safety and Health Act rules, and that overhead power line conductors and their supporting instruments were plainly visible to all of the workers.

“Joseph Basta voluntarily and knowingly consented to the circumstances that resulted in his injuries and had knowledge, or with the exercise of reasonable care should have had knowledge, of the dangers of overhead electrical supply lines,” the utility said.

Story via Andrew Guag at  Andrew Gaug can be reached at

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Electrical Room Fire at GM Plant in KS

January 2, 2011 Leave a comment

KANSAS CITY, KS – A fire Saturday afternoon at the General Motors Fairfax plant in Kansas City, Kan., caused minor damage.

The Kansas City, Kan., fire department responded to the call at 2:18 p.m. with four pumpers, two trucks, one chief, one safety officer, one EMS unit and a senior operations chief.

A fire department spokesman said the fire was caused by a battery problem in the electrical room but caused no interruption of service at the plant. Damage was estimated at $1,000.

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KS Man Found Electrocuted Near Power Pole

December 30, 2010 Leave a comment

Kansas City, KS – A Miami County man appears to have been electrocuted early today while working at a power pole, authorities said.

The body of Danny Joe Miller, 42, was found at the bottom of a power pole in front of his residence at about 7 a.m. in the 3400 block of W. 399th Street, according to the Miami County Sheriff’s Office.

An aluminum extension ladder was found leaning against the power pole. Miller was found lying at the base of the ladder. An autopsy will determine the cause of death.

Authorities don’t know how long Miller had been dead when he was found. His wife last saw him at about 4:30 this morning when he got home from work.

Investigators said Miller was trying to do something at the power pole, but what exactly they don’t know. Kansas City Power & Light was called to the scene and is doing its investigation.

The case is still open.

Story via

Electrical Safety should always be practiced when using ladders.  Only qualified persons are permitted to work on electrical equipment.