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Florida man electrocuted while trimming trees

A man in Florida has died after being electrocuted while trimming trees.

On Thursday, June 27, a man was trimming palm trees in Hudson, near Tampa Bay, around 3 p.m. local time when he possibly came into contact with nearby power lines, according to a Pasco Sheriff’s Office press release and reports from the Tampa Bay Times and the local partner station FOX 13.

The man, whose identity has not been publicly released by authorities, was working alone at the intersection of Maria Drive and Sea Ranch Drive, using an elevated work basket. A neighbor who witnessed the incident from his garage told FOX 13 his death occurred within seconds.

“I was working in the garage and heard all these electrical explosions, like from transformers,” recalled neighbor Henry Foytik, adding that he even saw the man’s waistband burning.

Sea Ranch Drive and Maria Drive.

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“I look across the street and see big balls of sparks flying down,” Foytik added. “The guy is hanging sideways (from the bucket), hanging from the side from the waist down.”

Medical staff tried to monitor the man’s heartbeat, but he had already died, Foytik added.

According to the Pasco Sheriff’s Office, the incident caused a temporary power outage in the area. The Withlacoochee River Electric Company restored power to the area shortly afterward.

FOX reported that the Pasco County Fire Department also responded to the incident.

“This was an isolated incident and no crime is suspected,” the Pasco Sheriff’s Office said in its statement. “There is no threat to public safety. The investigation is ongoing.”

An archive photo of a police car.


According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), more people die during tree felling than during any other logging operation. However, there are many ways to prevent these incidents.

Anyone planning to prune or remove trees should exercise extreme caution near power lines and assume that “all power lines are live,” the organization said.

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“Contact the utility company to discuss disconnecting and grounding or shielding power lines,” OSHA added. “All tree trimming or felling within 10 feet of a power line must be performed by trained and experienced arborists.”

In addition, OSHA recommends that people who prune trees should remove hazards from the area, never turn their backs on a falling tree, and not work in hazardous weather conditions.

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