Firefighter Tony Barker
Photo credit: Courtesy photo
A North Carolina firefighter was electrocuted Thursday afternoon at a small shed fire following a thunder storm in Wilkes County.
Tony Barker, 36, was a firefighter with Mountain View Fire Department, according to The Journal Patriot.
Wind from the storm blew part of a maple tree across power lines near a auto repair shop, igniting a small fire in a shed.
A woman who lives near the scene said she saw Barker bending over as if to look more closely where flames were coming from beneath a small metal storage building when he collapsed. She never saw him touch the shed, the paper reported.
She yelled for help, and fellow firefighters pulled him away and started CPR.
But despite the efforts by his crew and Wilkes Emergency Medical Services, they couldn't revive him. He was pronounced dead at Wilkes Regional Medical Center.
Mountain View Fire Chief Bill Johnson told reporters Barker was a dedicated firefighter and had been a member of the department for a year and five months.
Barker leaves behind a young wife and a three-year-old son.
Wilkes Fire Marshal Kevin Bounds explained the electrocution to reporters saying Barker didn't have to touch the shed. The electricity from the power lines on the storage building moved through the building and unpaved ground to the firefighter. Yhe ground was saturated with rainwater that accompanied the wind, which helped conduct electricity.