Grief-stricken family members, friends and work colleagues are still reeling from the loss of “kind, hardworking and honest” Trevor Craig who was apparently electrocuted on the job this morning.
The BRC employee was working with another man on the roof of the Marshall Trading warehouse in Webster Park, Wildey, St Michael around 10:42 a.m., near high-tension wires carrying 24,000 volts, when electricity passed through him, knocking the 64-year-old on his back mere inches from the edge of the roof. The private contractor who was with the Dodson Land, Black Rock, St Michael resident at the time escaped unharmed.
“It sounded like a bomb let go . . . and he dropped like a tree,” one eyewitness told Barbados TODAY.
News quickly spread about the tragic incident and relatives, friends and curious onlookers converged on the scene, watching Craig’s lifeless body precariously perched atop the roof.
He would remain there until after 5 p.m.
But long before then, about 1 p.m., Craig’s life-long companion Mabel Small; one of his stepdaughters, Janelle Small; and several of his workmates, including Cathy-Ann Alkins, turned up and openly mourned his untimely passing.
Janelle wept uncontrollably and had to be supported by a family friend, Sergeant Pedro Whitehall – who said Craig was like a father to him – when she arrived on the scene.
With tears streaming down her cheeks, she told Barbados TODAY she was heartbroken that her father was gone.
“He is not my biological father, but he is the only father I knew. My dad is gone. He came into my life when I was nine years old until this morning when we spoke. He had called me for some information to assist someone,” said the library assistant at the Alexandra School who was accompanied by that school’s principal Orson Alleyne.
Her mother Mabel, who suffers from diabetes and high blood pressure, was too distraught to speak. She sat in a vehicle with Alkins, grief etched on her face.
Alkins spoke glowingly of Craig, a building contractor, whom she knew for more than ten years.
“I was the receptionist at the company for six or seven years and Craig befriended me. He was a very kind, honest and hard-working gentleman, well known throughout the community. He was well liked and pleasant,” she said.
“He would be sadly missed throughout the community and the Williams Group of Companies. He was an asset to the Williams Industries Group and that is a fact.”
Chairman of Williams Industries Ralph Bizzy Williams was among senior officials from the company that Craig had given more than 40 years of his life to, who rushed to the scene.
High Court judge Randall Worrell also offered moral support to the family of a man he described as “a fine gentleman and a good friend”.
In addition to his stepdaughters Janelle and Yvette Small, Craig had one son, 22-year-old Dwayne Small who is pursuing a Master’s Degree in Sports Medicine and Computer Engineering in the United Kingdom.
In the immediate aftermath of the tragic incident, around 10:46 a.m., the Barbados Light & Power Company (BL&P) de-energized its transmission lines in the area at the request of the Barbados Fire Service.
It was after the power was cut, police public relations officer Acting Assistant Superintendent David Welch told reporters, that a team was able to get to Craig to ascertain whether he was hurt or had died.
Residents and businesses in Wildey, Upper Collymore Rock and sections of the Pine were affected by the outage. However, electricity was restored at 11:49 a.m.
“Light & Power continues to work with the authorities from the Barbados Fire Service and the Barbados Police Force to probe the incident,” the BL&P said in a statement issued this evening.
The company also expressed “heartfelt sympathy” to Craig’s family, friends and colleagues.
A BL&P engineer who spoke briefly to Barbados TODAY on the scene noted that even if Craig did not touch the wires he could still have been electrocuted.
“Those high tension wires which carry as many as 24,000 volts can be very dangerous. One has to be about ten feet away to be out of harm’s way. If you are two or three feet away you can be electrocuted even if you do not touch the wires,” he said.
However, Welch said investigations would continue to officially determine the circumstances and cause of Craig’s death.
“Information coming out is still sketchy and we have to do further inquiries,” he said.