WRIGHT TWP. — A construction worker was fatally injured when the lift he was operating touched a power line Friday morning in the Crestwood Industrial Park.
Jason Evans, 43, of Clarks Summit died from an apparent electrocution, said Luzerne County Coroner Bill Lisman. An autopsy will be conducted at yet-to-be determined date, Lisman said.
Evans was pronounced dead at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center in Plains Township where he was taken from the scene by Mountain Top EMS.
The accident occurred while Evans, an employee of a roofing contractor, was on a job at East Coast Logistics & Distribution Inc. warehouse along Oak Hill Road.
Wright Township police said emergency responders answered a 911 call at 9:51 a.m. for a man who had been electrocuted. Police said the man, later identified as Evans, was placing material onto the roof from the ground when the lift’s boom came into contact with a high tension power line. The lift caught fire, Evans was electrocuted and fell to the ground, police said.
Evans was immediately attended to and Wright Township and Mountain Top fire departments responded, police said. Firefighters could not extinguish the flames due to the active power lines and contacted utility company PP&L for assistance, police said.
From the nearby I2M property smoke could be seen rising from the burning vehicle, with its boom still extended and touching the line.
James Webb said he was driving around the rear of the I2M warehouse around 9:50 a.m. after being asked to come up from the company’s other nearby facility and heard someone yelling, “Get out. Stop the forklift.”
Webb, 33, of North Carolina, said he next heard an explosion.
“That’s when I ran over there,” Webb said.
A worker on the roof of the other warehouse yelled, “go and get a fire extinguisher” and Webb said he ran into the I2M building to get one. He returned with it and gave it to the man who had come down from the roof to the burning vehicle, Webb said. The lift’s operator was on the ground and CPR was being performed on him, Webb said.
Two brothers who work in the I2M building and are volunteer firefighters heard the 911 call and ran over to assist.
The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration was on scene and investigating, police said.
Reach Jerry Lynott at 570-991-6120 or on Twitter @TLJerryLynott.