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Author Topic: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution  (Read 5822 times)

Mike Sokol

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Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« on: August 03, 2015, 09:24:41 am »

Just saw this story on EC&M this morning. The takeaway is that all conduits need to be properly grounded.

Mike

A 16-year-old was nearly electrocuted during a game of hide and seek in the Tampa, Florida, area last week when his younger brother pulled him from the current.

According to a report from ABC Action News, the two brothers say they were playing manhunt, a game much like hide and seek. In an attempt to get to the roof to hide, 16-year-old Justin Martin says he jumped onto an air conditioning unit and grabbed a metal pole hoping to climb up to the roof.

Martin says that pole was filled with 220 V of electricity, and he thought he was paralyzed by the shock. Unable to move, he screamed for help.

His 13-year-old brother Dominic tried to pull his brother off the pole by grabbing his clothes but he said the electrical current was too strong.  Not knowing what to do next, Dominic said he decided to tackle him, and they both fell back, breaking the hold.

Their mom, Grace Martin, said she talked to property managers about the pipe and was told it wasn't grounded properly, according to the news report. She was told that may be the reason why it shocked her son.  Property managers have since covered that metal pole with PVC.

Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative did a site survey of the area and said the equipment that shocked the teen didn't belong to the power company. Pasco County code enforcement would be responsible for checking it, the report said.

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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2015, 11:24:28 am »

So they put a band-aid on it (PVC condom) rather than immediately taking a life-threatening piece out of service.  I hope Pasco County shuts them down and the mom sues them.
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"Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possible can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something."  - Kurt Vonnegut

Mike Sokol

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Re: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2015, 12:19:34 pm »

So they put a band-aid on it (PVC condom) rather than immediately taking a life-threatening piece out of service.  I hope Pasco County shuts them down and the mom sues them.

Yeah, you noticed that, eh? Seemed a little wacky to me as well.
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John Roberts {JR}

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Re: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2015, 12:27:56 pm »

I'm glad the kid was able to save his brother... many less clever would get stuck too...

JR
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Scott Wagner

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Re: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2015, 01:15:14 pm »

It seems to me that it would've been far easier to simply ground the conduit than to fit PVC over the entire run.
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Stephen Kirby

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Re: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2015, 02:01:12 pm »

Glad that nobody was permanently hurt.  But the story is odd.  I recognize that "filled with 220V of electricity" is a layman's terminology.  But do they mean that it had 220 running inside it, or the conduit itself was hot at 220 WRT ground?  How does that happen?  One leg miswired hot to ground would put 110 on it.  Not sure how a semi isolated conduit can float up that high.  I'd like to understand this, another thing to watch out for/test for in unknown venues if it's possible.
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Mark Cadwallader

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Re: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2015, 02:02:19 pm »

It seems to me that it would've been far easier to simply ground the conduit than to fit PVC over the entire run.

No, because that would have required fixing all the related items that are out of spec. (End snark.)
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2015, 08:52:02 pm »

Glad that nobody was permanently hurt.  But the story is odd.  I recognize that "filled with 220V of electricity" is a layman's terminology.  But do they mean that it had 220 running inside it, or the conduit itself was hot at 220 WRT ground?  How does that happen?  One leg miswired hot to ground would put 110 on it.  Not sure how a semi isolated conduit can float up that high.  I'd like to understand this, another thing to watch out for/test for in unknown venues if it's possible.

Again, layman's terminology, as in "big wires, big numbers, big hurt, much money to pay".  I am always amazed at how many people are afraid of "220". but think nothing of 120.  A phase to phase shock is rare and a phase to ground shock from 220 is the same as 120-but people don't pay me to wire what they are not afraid of, so there is no incentive to waste the energy to try to educate them beyond their understanding.

Who metered it?  Maybe the AC unit was hot and the pipe (water? gas? structural?) was grounded?  Telling her it was not properly grounded seems to be blame shifting.
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David Buckley

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Re: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2015, 09:28:14 pm »

Quote
Martin says that pole was filled with 220 V of electricity...
That is a lovely turn of phrase...
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2015, 11:43:27 pm »

That is a lovely turn of phrase...

Something Freudian.
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"Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possible can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something."  - Kurt Vonnegut

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Re: Teen Saves Brother From Electrocution
« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2015, 11:43:27 pm »


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