UNC worker burned on campus as power outage hits several areas

Aleksander Zhushma said he burned his hands while putting out flames on the body of an UNC employee.

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) – An eyewitness said a University of North Carolina employee’s body was on fire after an incident linked to a campus power outage on Wednesday afternoon.

The power outage hit parts of the campus until abut 8 p.m. and closed several buildings, some of which remained closed Wednesday night.

The outage was caused by an incident in an electrical closet in Dey Hall. Emergency officials responded to Dey shortly before 4 p.m. and one University employee was transported from the scene by EMS.

Eyewitness Aleksander Zhushma said he helped put out the flames with his bare hands.

“It was from his legs area all the way up to his chest area. It was like most of his body was on fire,” Zhushma said.

The Daily Tar Heel, the school’s student newspaper, reported that Undergraduate Library, Davis Library, Murphey Hall, Carroll Hall, the Campus Y, Dey Hall and Ruffin Residence Hall were all without power.

Dey Hall and Wilson Library remained without power as of Thursday morning and officials said those buildings would be closed until further notice.

Employees who work in those buildings should not report to work until the buildings re-open.

Thursday classes and activities beginning before noon at Dey Hall and Wilson Library were canceled. Check Alert Carolina for updates.

In addition, Lenoir Dining Hall, UNC Student Stores and the Student Union were closed Wednesday night and will re-open Thursday morning. Pathway lighting is limited on Polk Place and pedestrians should use alternative routes through campus, if possible.

The Carolina Union will be closed until power is restored.

OSHA is investigating the cause of the incident. They said a worker came in contact with a live wire, which caused him to be badly burned.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s