Local

June 17, 2014

Electrocuted tree trimmer is identified as a Kansas City man

Carlos Enrique Gomez-Escobar, 35, died instantly when a metal piece of his buck strap came into contact with a power line, police said. Federal authorities have launched an investigation.

Authorities have identified a 35-year-old man electrocuted Monday while trimming a tree in Parkville as Carlos Enrique Gomez-Escobar of Kansas City.

The incident occurred shortly before 9 a.m. Monday at a residence in the 6500 block of Northwest Rock Garden Road.

Gomez-Escobar died instantly when a metal piece of his buck strap came into contact with a power line, police said. He apparently had been trying to remove a detached limb that had become wedged between several branches. He was trying to lower himself when the strap touched an electrical power line that had 7,600 volts coursing through it, said Parkville Police Chief Kevin Chrisman.

Gomez-Escobar worked for a private company hired by the homeowner. A person who answered the company’s office phone Tuesday declined to speak to a reporter.

Federal authorities launched an investigation Tuesday, said Barbara Theriot, area director for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration office in Kansas City. The investigation was in the early stages, she said.

Theriot said the OSHA region that includes the Kansas City area recently started a program that focuses on safety in tree trimming. An agency study showed that electrocution caused 14 percent of tree trimming fatalities from 1992 to 2007, she said.

To reach Glenn E. Rice, call 816-234-4341 or send email to grice@kcstar.com.

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