Two killed, one injured by electric shock at San Juan County mine

Two San Juan County miners were killed and another was injured when they were shocked by a power line Saturday, according to the sheriff’s department.

About noon, the men — Russell Helquist, Matthew Johnston and Arthur Secrest — were working with a piece of industrial equipment at the Intrepid Potash mine, south of Moab, when equipment touched a power line, and the three men were shocked, the sheriff’s office said in a news release on Facebook.

Helquist and Johnston were killed. Secrest, who was found unconscious but breathing, was flown from the scene to a Salt Lake City hospital.

All men were from the Moab-area, according to the sheriff’s office.

“Our heartfelt condolences go out to the family and friends of these good men,” the release said.

The cause of the electrocution is under investigation, according to a statement from Intrepid Potash spokesman Matt Preston. Mine operations in Moab are stopped until the investigation is complete.

“Intrepid expresses its deepest sympathies to the families and friends of those involved,” Preston said in the statement.

Intrepid Potash operates three solar evaporation mines in Wendover and Moab, and in Carlsbad, New Mexico. The company also runs an underground mine in Carlsbad. The company produces fertilizers, animal feed and salt, salt brine and water used in the oil and gas industry, according to their website.

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