by , on January 26, 2017
electric shock symbol

One electrical worker has died and another is still in the hospital following a shock incident and subsequent fire in Amarillo, Texas, a few days ago.

Roper Copelin, 30, died early Sunday morning at the University Medical Center Timothy J. Harnar Regional Burn Center in Lubbock, TX.

Mr. Copelin’s boss is being treated for smoke inhalation and burns over 30% of his body.

The two men were working on the 2nd floor of the Xcel Energy Building, which is still under construction. Employees on scene say the two construction workers were drilling into an electrical box and may have made contact with energized lines.

We will post more details as they become public.

UPDATE: OSHA is still investigating this incident.


Hugh Hoagland
About author:
Hugh Hoagland is the foremost tester of clothing and PPE exposed to electrical arcs and is an arc flash expert. Read more about Hugh.

5 Comments on "Fatality in Amarillo Due to Shock Incident"

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Pat - 7 March 2017 Reply

Is there any information in the voltage involved in this incident?

    Ken Sellars
    Ken Sellars - 10 April 2017 Reply

    I was told by a family member that the voltage was 480 volt 3-phase power. However, this has not been confirmed.

    Ken Sellars
    Ken Sellars - 10 April 2017 Reply

    The incident is still under investigation. As soon as we get the final report, we will be posting an update.

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Gary Kinney - 7 March 2017 Reply

so sad. It shouldn't of happened

    Ken Sellars
    Ken Sellars - 10 April 2017 Reply

    So true. I spoke with a family member of the survivor in this event. It is still under investigation, but certainly any incident like this is avoidable. It is critical to ensure a safe electrical work condition prior to working in or around live voltages.

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