Worker Indentified In Fayetteville Construction Accident

Worker shocked.jpg

The worker who was hospitalized after being shocked Jan. 3 has been identified as Rafael Medina, officials said.

Medina is hospitalized at Mercy Hospital in Springfield, Mo., in good condition, said Jerry Ennis, vice president and director of construction services for Thompson Thrift Construction in Indiana.

The U.S. Department of Labor confirmed to 5NEWS on Jan. 8 that the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the incident at the Cardinal at West Center complex, 4 S. Duncan Ave. OSHA is part of the Department of Labor.

Medina was hospitalized in serious condition after being shocked by an electric power line at the apartment construction site, according to the Fayetteville Fire Department.

The construction worker suffered cardiac arrest at the site, but medical crews used a defibrillator to restart his heart. He was then transported to Washington Regional Medical Center in Fayetteville, said Mauro Campos, fire department battalion chief.

The worker was later transferred to a Springfield, Mo., burn center, where the Central Arkansas man was listed in serious condition.

The worker came into contact with a live power line at the construction site, Campos said. The man was working with a long metal handle trowl on the top of a concrete building when an electric current jumped from a live power line to the trowl, which had an aluminum handle, Ennis said.

Campos said the victim had a burn exit wound from the electricity that shocked his body.

The Cardinal apartment complex’s website encourages University of Arkansas students to live at the site, selling their location as close to the UA campus. Construction updates by the complex show dirt work began last summer, and framing for the walls started in October 2013.

The complex is scheduled to open in time for the UA’s fall 2014 semester, and has begun accepting applications for leases, according to the website.

Ownership of the land listed as the address for the complex transferred in 2008 to a Nathan Woodruff, according to a deed of the property. There is no activity on the deed since Woodruff took over ownership in March 2008, property records show.