Authorities identify smokestack victim

March 16, 2006|By RICHARD IRWIN | RICHARD IRWIN,SUN REPORTER

The man crushed to death when a large section of a smokestack at W.R. Grace Chemical Co. in Curtis Bay broke off and fell onto a company pickup truck on Tuesday was identified yesterday as a Harford County resident.

The other person in the vehicle, whose name was not released, escaped injury.

Authorities were attempting to determine if Tuesday's high winds might have caused the smokestack to collapse. The Maryland Occupation Health & Safety Administration is investigating the accident.

Jimmy Wayne Streeter, 43, a W.R. Grace mechanic from the 200 block of Cherry Hill Road in Street, and a fellow worker were seated in the truck next to a Grace building in the 5500 block of Chemical Road when at least 100 feet of a 200-foot metal smokestack broke off about 6 p.m., authorities said.

Chief Kevin Cartwright, a city Fire Department spokesman, said the falling smokestack, which was lined with either plaster or concrete, cleared most of the building but fell on the driver's side of the truck, where Streeter was sitting behind the wheel.

At the time of the collapse, the National Weather Service in Sterling, Va., said wind speeds for Baltimore recorded at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport were clocked at between 23 mph to 33 mph.

A local TV station reported Tuesday that wind speeds two miles from the accident site were clocked at 41 mph.

richard.irwin@baltsun.com

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