Heavy Equipment Hazards in Burkburnett - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Heavy Equipment Hazards in Burkburnett

Two very similar incidents, almost exactly twenty four hours apart.
 

Friday morning, local emergency and electric company officials responded to a section of railroad tracks in Burkburnett when a worker clearing brush on the Wichita, Tillman and Jackson Railway accidentally connected his brush cutter with a piece of electrical wire.
 
The W.T.J.R. employee waited inside the cab for about 20 minutes while ONCOR determined whether the line was live or not, and emerged uninjured. 

The same unfortunately cannot be said about an accident that happened on Thursday involving a Burkburnett city employee.

"The bucket piece had come off of the pin and swung down, and caught the employee between the jaw plate that he was welding on and the bucket himself, explained Burk City Manager Mike Whaley.  

The malfunction occurred while three city employees were on a cleanup project on a parcel of land on 7th Street. Whaley says an accident like this has never happened before, and they're in the midst of a full investigation.

"We're working with Warren Cat, and they've taken that equipment back to the shop to do further investigation to figure out what happened," Whaley said. "Then we can figure out what type of precautions to take in the future, so we can do the training to make sure an incident like this doesn't occur again." 

Since all indicators point to the excavator being stationary and turned off before the incident occurred, right now Burkburnett is treating this as a total mechanical failure. 

Scott Williams, the injured city employee, was air lifted to United Regional hospital after his coworkers called 9-1-1. 

Whaley says given what happened to Williams, his outcome is looking good. Williams sustained two spinal fractures. but he could be released from the hospital as early as Saturday.

Despite the incident, Burkburnett city employees have not expressed concerns for their safety. Instead, they are only concerned about the health of their co-worker, Scott Williams.

Dave Caulfield, Newschannel 6

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