Monday, August 20, 2018
News Roundup

Fourth worker in Tampa Electric plant accident dies

A fourth worker involved in the June 29 accident at Tampa Electric's Big Bend Power station died Saturday at Tampa General Hospital, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office said.

Frank Lee Jones, 55, succumbed to his injuries around 5 p.m.

His son, Frankie Atkins, confirmed the death.

In a video message released late Saturday, Tampa Electric CEO Gordon Gillette said he was saddened to report the death toll had risen to four.

"This was a horrible accident and I am deeply saddened by its very human impact," he said.

Gillette thanked the community for its support and added: "I'm sorry to acknowledge the obvious: that this incident and its aftermath are far from over."

TIMES ANALYSIS: TECO accounts for nearly half of Florida power plant deaths, data shows

Jones was one of six workers who were severely burned when molten slag gushed out of a tank at the Apollo Beach power plant. The substance can reach temperatures of more than 1,000 degrees.

Senior plant operator Michael McCort, 60, and contract worker Christopher Irvin, 40, died at the scene.

Contract worker Antonio "Marro" Navarrete, 21, died Wednesday.

Two others remained in the hospital late Saturday: Jones' stepson Gary Marine Jr., 32, and Armando J. Perez, 56.

Jones was a contract worker employed by Gaffin Industrial Services in Riverview. He had been with the company for 27 years.

RELATED: Mom got haunting phone call from son as molten slag hit him in Big Bend accident

Atkins, his son, worked with him for a time, but Jones made him find another job because the work was too dangerous.

In the immediate aftermath of the accident, Atkins told the Tampa Bay Times that Jones was a family man who did everything he could to support his kids.

Contact Melissa Gomez at [email protected] Follow @melissagomez004.

Comments
Justin Watson standing out in battle for Bucs’ final receiver spot

Justin Watson standing out in battle for Bucs’ final receiver spot

In the battle for the fifth receiver spot, Justin Watson needed to stand out.  Being 6-foot-3, 216 pounds helps. But the Penn rookie needed a play to separate himself from the pack.He got it at the end of the first half in Saturday's 30-14 win a...
Updated: 29 minutes ago

Pasco Political Notebook for Aug. 24

Political NotebookMariano to discuss reelection campaignState Rep. Amber Mariano will speak to the Republican Club of Central Pasco Aug. 27 at Copperstone Executive Suites, 3632 Land O’ Lakes Blvd., Land O’ Lakes. Social time begins at 6:30 p.m., wit...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Pasco Briefs for Aug. 24

COUNTYWIDETax collector hosts shoe, sock collectionThe Pasco County Tax Collector’s Office is participating in the annual "Two Good Soles" campaign, a collaborative effort between Pasco County government and the Pasco school district to collect new s...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Robber wearing gas mask fires shot in ceiling of Pasco store, deputies say

Robber wearing gas mask fires shot in ceiling of Pasco store, deputies say

Deputies are searching for a man who held up a convenience store with a shotgun while wearing a gas mask, according to the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office.On Friday at around 9 p.m., deputies say a man robbed the Beacon Square Grocery in Holiday. Durin...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Crossing guard admits to accidentally killing gopher tortoise in Dunedin

Crossing guard admits to accidentally killing gopher tortoise in Dunedin

A crossing guard turned himself in to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, saying he was the person seen on video running over an endangered gopher tortoise at an elementary school on Saturday. Robert Dantschisch, 48, saw surveillance video from the...
Updated: 1 hour ago

As Trump fumes on Twitter, first lady warns of ‘destructive and harmful’ side of social media

As her husband continued to rip into his adversaries on Twitter, first lady Melania Trump on Monday warned that social media can be used in a "destructive and harmful" manner during remarks at a conference on preventing cyberbullying."In today’s glob...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Client’s ex-husband says Tampa divorce lawyer Arnold Levine hit him with car

Client’s ex-husband says Tampa divorce lawyer Arnold Levine hit him with car

Longtime Tampa divorce lawyer Arnold Levine is known for street fighting in court. But a client’s ex-husband alleges in a lawsuit that Levine took their case to the real street, bumping the man with the back of a car.Israel Barnes, the ex, was on foo...
Updated: 1 hour ago
TECO customers won’t pay for hurricane recovery costs

TECO customers won’t pay for hurricane recovery costs

It’s official — Tampa Electric Co. customers won’t be paying for hurricane recovery costs. State regulators on Monday unanimously approved the utility’s request to use savings under the new federal tax law to cover hurricane-related costs."The ratepa...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Jury convicts man for sexually assaulting a woman on a plane as his wife sat next to him

Jury convicts man for sexually assaulting a woman on a plane as his wife sat next to him

It was a late-night flight from Las Vegas, and the woman rested her head on the window as the plane neared Detroit.She was startled awake by the man in the middle seat next to her. His hand was down her unbuttoned pants, and her shirt was undone.The ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rob Kazmier’s Hernando County coaching roots get deeper

Rob Kazmier’s Hernando County coaching roots get deeper

BROOKSVILLE — Coach Kaz has been a Hernando County high school football fixture since his days as a 19-year-old volunteer assistant at Nature Coast. This season, he has a program to call his own.Rob Kazmier is the new head coach at Hernando Hig...
Updated: 1 hour ago