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The Sharpsville community is praying that a former star athlete can pull through after being shocked by a live wire over the weekend.
Tyler Luchey, 18, was still in critical condition Monday night at UPMC Mercy Hospital in Pittsburgh. He was working on a roof Saturday afternoon at a house on West Main Street in Sharpsville when his father’s contracting company, Affordable Builders, when a piece of metal he was holding came in contact with a live transmission line.
The jolt blasted Luchey off the roof and down to the pavement below. He suffered broken bones, blood clots on his brain and burns over half of his body.
“This is definitely, definitely just an accident. I mean, there’s no way, this could have happened to anybody,” said Cotey Golub, Luchey’s step-brother.
It was an eye-opening accident for customers and contractors around the Valley.
“And you should do your homework because it is important, because if you have somebody on your roof and there’s an accident, you could as a homeowner, open yourself up to liability too if that contractor doesn’t have the proper insurance in place,” said Chris White, roofing division manager for Boak & Sons.
“The one thing that you’re going to want to look for is where those electric lines go into the house, are they old electric lines, are there any exposed wires,” White said.
White won’t speculate whether Luchey had the proper safety training to do this type of work. But, he said Boak & Sons puts its 170 employees through regular safety training under the watch of a full-time safety director.
White said every contractor does things a little differently.
“In a smaller family business like that, I”m not certain who would be responsible for making sure everybody’s trained,” White said.
But even with proper safety training, freak accidents still happen.
After making sure the electrical hazard is removed, first responders can focus on the victim.
“What we want to do is monitor the heart and make sure that it’s stable and beating correctly, and then after that is done, we want to address our normal airway, breathing and circulation, and check for any other signs of bleeding or other traumatic injuries,” said Austintown firefighter and paramedic Fred Marcum.
“What this does is it does open our eyes as contractors, and as homeowners, as businesses, to the importance of safety,” White said.