Burned man still hospitalized after electric shock

Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2009 3:10 PM
Last updated 4:02 PM
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A Hephzibah man burned while trying to restore his disconnected electrical service remained hospitalized today as utility officials continue to investigate the unusual accident.

Shortly after Berry M. “Monty” Arrington’s service was disconnected from his residence at 2019 Liberty Church Road on Friday afternoon, he apparently climbed a ladder and tried to reconnect the lines. The resulting jolt from the 7,200-volt line threw him from the ladder, breaking his back and burning both of his arms.

A hospital spokeswoman at Medical College of Georgia Hospital said Mr. Arrington was listed in critical condition today.

Meanwhile, a reader of The Augusta Chronicle’s story posted Monday on its Web site contacted officials at Jefferson Energy Cooperative and paid Mr. Arrington’s $91 balance and a reconnection fee.

“It was the right thing to do,” said the Atlanta woman, who is a former Augusta resident who did not want to be named.

Jefferson Energy could not say how many customers are disconnected each year for overdue payments, but said the cooperative typically follows the same rules as those imposed by the Georgia Public Service Commission on larger, for-profit utilities.

“As a courtesy, we go by what the PSC says,” Mr. Chalker said.

The commission rules stipulate that power cannot be disconnected if the temperature is forecast to dip below 32 degrees within 24 hours of the disconnection.

In a Monday interview, Mr. Chalker said the cutoff was 40 degrees. “I had said 40, but after checking, we don’t cut it off if it goes below 32.”

Saturday’s low temperature in Augusta, according to the National Weather Service, was 34 degrees.

Jefferson Energy, with about 30,000 customers, is one of 42 non-profit electric membership cooperatives. Georgia Power Company, by comparison, has more than 2.3 million customers.

Georgia Power spokeswoman Konswello Monroe said she could not divulge how many customers are disconnected each year for non-payment. “I can say, though, that we have disconnected fewer customers this year than we did last year.”

Georgia Power follows the Public Service Commission rule, Ms. Monroe said.

“During cold weather, it will not be disconnected if at 8 a.m. on date of the scheduled disconnection, the temperature, or forecasted low, for the next 24 hours, is expected to be 32 degrees Fahrenheit or below,” she said.

Similar rules apply during hot weather, when the forecasted high temperature is 98 degrees or higher, or when there is a heat index forecast of 110 degrees or higher.

Cut-off Guidelines

Georgia Public Service Commission criteria for disconnection of electrical service*:

• Bill for service is not paid within at least 45 days after the date of the bill.

• Written notice of proposed disconnect must be provided at least five days prior to date of disconnection.

• Utility makes good-faith effort to make personal contact at least two days prior to the proposed disconnect date.

• Service shall not be disconnected for illness nonpayment when the company receives written notice from a healthcare provider certifying the illness would be aggravated by the discontinuance of service. The disconnection shall be held the shorter of either the duration of the illness or one month from the date of the notice.

• Customer may renew postponement period one additional time.

• If the forecasted low temperature for a 24-hour period beginning at 8:00 a.m. on the date of proposed disconnect is below 32ºF, service shall not be disconnected on that day.

*NOTE: these rules apply only to Georgia Power and Savannah Electric Power Company, but many electric membership cooperatives voluntarily adhere to same rules.

Source: Georgia Public Service Commission

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Newsreader
11
Points
Newsreader 12/15/09 - 03:24 pm
0
0
So why is Jefferson Energy

So why is Jefferson Energy being chastised? The spokesman may have misquoted the temperature limit, but the company still followed the policy of GPSC which does not extend to Cooperatives. If the power were cutoff in error or against any policy, it still would not give Mr. Arrington the right to reconnect it himself. He should not go near powerlines. We teach our children that before school. Stay away and avoid injury.

tdp
0
Points
tdp 12/15/09 - 03:35 pm
0
0
What a nice thing for the

What a nice thing for the Atlanta resident to do! I'm embarassed I didn't think of doing that myself.

seenitB4
98653
Points
seenitB4 12/15/09 - 03:45 pm
0
0
Jefferson Elec. you need to

Jefferson Elec. you need to ck with the folks at Ga. Power, they seem to have a better routine on disconnects,,I don't know when I've seen soo many negative comments about a co. We can't change what has happened to Mr. Arrington but sure hope your boss has a few meetings on procedures..& maybe ask some if they want to contribute more to prevent this..

ionlyknow
0
Points
ionlyknow 12/15/09 - 03:47 pm
0
0
Either way with temps as low

Either way with temps as low as 32 or as high as 98 could kill an elderly person....

hopefulinaugusta
0
Points
hopefulinaugusta 12/15/09 - 03:49 pm
0
0
Thank You Atlanta reader. Tis

Thank You Atlanta reader. Tis the season. May God Bless You and may He forgive some of these other readers. There is still hope for us yet.

nelsonhargrove
0
Points
nelsonhargrove 12/15/09 - 03:52 pm
0
0
seenit I thought both said

seenit I thought both said they went by the psc's guidelines so why would jefferson want to check with ga pwr?

Just Another Day
0
Points
Just Another Day 12/15/09 - 03:55 pm
0
0
Hi. I'm Just Nuts and I'm

Hi. I'm Just Nuts and I'm here to tell you that I have been in a pill induced coma for the last 3 years and I have now seen the horrible postings I have left over the years. From the bottom of my neutral heart, I'm sorry. Peace and brotherhood all thru out the land and may God bless us all. from now on it will be a different Just Nuts........

nelsonhargrove
0
Points
nelsonhargrove 12/15/09 - 04:57 pm
0
0
Spzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Spzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzztttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttt! Sound of breaking the law---stealing!

johnston.cliff
2
Points
johnston.cliff 12/15/09 - 05:03 pm
0
0
Yes, it's nice to do for

Yes, it's nice to do for someone that is having hard times. Of course, I'm reminded of the boy that killed his parents and then asked for understanding because he was an orphan. I guess paying Monty's electric bill was the right thing. If the benevolent benefactor feels better after paying the bill, it was definitely the right thing to do.

Captain Obvious
0
Points
Captain Obvious 12/15/09 - 05:39 pm
0
0
Would Monty keep working for

Would Monty keep working for someone who didn't pay HIM?!?

paulwheeler
137
Points
paulwheeler 12/15/09 - 06:56 pm
0
0
Mr. Hargrove, I seem to

Mr. Hargrove, I seem to remember something in the good book about he who is without sin casting the first stone. Congratulations to you for being the perfect human. Hopefully that frying sound you seem to enjoy will not be the sound of you in the afterlife. God bless you Mr. Hargrove, hopefully you will never do anything stupid in your life so that some brainless idiot makes sport of you in the little local paper.
thanks to the wonderful soul from Atlanta that was good enough to pay Monroe's electric bill. He will be needing a lot more help in the future.

nelsonhargrove
0
Points
nelsonhargrove 12/15/09 - 07:03 pm
0
0
No, wheeler, it won't be me

No, wheeler, it won't be me in the aftrlife. I live by the 10 commandents, which. by the way, one says do not steal! What do you live by, paulwheeler, OBAMA RULES?

bushwhacker
39
Points
bushwhacker 12/15/09 - 07:32 pm
0
0
nelson, you have alot of hate

nelson, you have alot of hate in you.. therapy could be the answer to your problems.. merry christmas

paulwheeler
137
Points
paulwheeler 12/15/09 - 07:58 pm
0
0
Mr. Hargrove I gather by your

Mr. Hargrove I gather by your reading comprehension skills that you are a self made man. I can't believe you live by the ten commandments when you obviously do not understand them. Hopefully you will never be put in a position to where you will actually have to pray to your God becasue he will not know you.

nelsonhargrove
0
Points
nelsonhargrove 12/15/09 - 09:14 pm
0
0
paul, I pray everyday---you

paul, I pray everyday---you can bet your cojones--I won't have to pray because I stoled something!! Got that, sucker? Same goes for you jackwhacker!

nelsonhargrove
0
Points
nelsonhargrove 12/15/09 - 09:15 pm
0
0
Wheeler, should you be as

Wheeler, should you be as much---idiot!

nelsonhargrove
0
Points
nelsonhargrove 12/15/09 - 09:17 pm
0
0
Wheeler, and whacker, i will

Wheeler, and whacker, i will ask you the same question I asked numbnuts, why didn't you pay his bill, HA!

ANGEL
0
Points
ANGEL 12/16/09 - 12:41 pm
0
0
If you are a so called

If you are a so called Christian than you obvisously are not praying to the RIGHT God. The bible talks a great length about forgiveness and falling from GRACE. Loving your neighbors as you love yourself and do not judge others, you need to go back and read the REAL HOLY BIBLE. It is not your place to judge anyone and I have raised my children to believe "God does not like Ugly and what goes around comes around", so you need to think long and hard about what you say and do becauser sooner or later it will come back and bit you on the HINEY! We christian people love and take care of our neighbors and do not judge people becuase our father above us is always watching over us and you have to be ready on Judgement Day and only you can answer for what you have said and done.

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