Explosion at logging site injures four

Published 12:09 pm Saturday, April 9, 2011

EMPORIA—Four men who reportedly worked for a Waverly logging company were flown to MCV Hospital in Richmond after an explosion in Greensville County on Thursday.

Among the injured was Jeremy Everett of Sedley, who was in critical but stable condition on Friday, according a hospital spokeswoman. Victim Lou Bickham was in critical condition, the spokeswoman said.

Names of the other two victims could not be obtained; without names, the hospital would not give out their conditions.

The men work for Pinecrest Timber, according to Emporia Fire Chief Chris Rawlings.

The Greensville County Sheriff’s Office investigated the incident, according to a dispatcher. Sheriff J.R. Edwards Jr. did not return repeated phone calls from The Tidewater News on Friday.

Firefighters received a call to a logging site a few miles off Hell’s Island Road near the North Carolina border from an uninjured co-worker at 5:12 p.m., Rawlings said. Emergency personnel treated the men for burns while waiting for the four helicopters.

“One of them (had burns on more than) 70 percent or better of their entire body,” Rawlings said. “One was about 50 percent and one was close to 90 percent.”

All were conscious.

There were a total of seven men at the worksite; the three others were not nearby when the explosion occurred, Rawlings said.

He heard the men were doing maintenance on equipment when the explosion occurred.

“I don’t know how it happened; I just hope the good Lord is looking out for them,” Rawlings said.

A woman who answered the phone at Pinecrest on Friday would not comment.