Captain’s Widow Sues Over Ice-Bucket Challenge Electrocution Death

The widow of a Kentucky fire captain who was electrocuted while assisting with an ice-bucket challenge event last August has filed a wrongful death suit against Kentucky Utilities, Campbellsville University, and Pierce Manufacturing.

Gina Grider filed suit in Taylor County Circuit Court last month over the August 21, 2014 death of her husband, Captain Tony Grider of the Campbellsville Fire Department. Captain Grider’s crew was assisting the Campbellsville University marching band complete an ice-bucket challenge when their tower ladder came too close to electrical wires and arced. Four members were shocked. Captain Grider, 41 one at the time of his death, was the only firefighter killed.

In January, Kentucky OSHA fined the Campbellsville Fire Department $25,000 for improper training and not requiring firefighters to wear their PPE while in the bucket. At this time neither the court docket nor media reports indicate that the fire department has been named in the suit.

More on the story.

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.

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