Man Killed in Campville Firework Accident
On Monday night, after the barbecues and the parades, many of us settled down to watch firework displays happening throughout our city. Many of us even decided to put on our own. In Campville, Darren Lotow, a 42-year-old from Hawthorn, was lighting his collection of festive explosives when one of them, described as a very large and similar to a mortar, went off prematurely. Deputies from Alachua County issued a report on the accident which stated that the police were first notified around 9:30 p.m. when a woman, who identified herself as Lotow’s wife, called 911 to report that she could not contact her husband. She said that he had recently been lighting fireworks off in the middle of a large pasture.
When the emergency vehicles arrived, Lotow had already been found by members of his family. According to the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office Spokesman, Lt. Brandon Kutner, Lotow was using a home-made device made out of PVC pipes and fixed to the ground to launch the fireworks. When the mortar-like firework malfunctioned, it blew a hole through the side of the PVC device and caused tremendous damage to Lotow’s face and chest. Lt. Kutner stated that Lotow’s family, who was watching from further away, heard the explosion and became alarmed when Lotow failed to return from the pasture. Attempts were made to reach him via cellphone, but when he failed to answer members of the family began to search for him. The relatives who first discovered Lotow in the field attempted to administer CPR while waiting for emergency response teams, and when the deputies and the Alachua County Fire Rescue arrived the medical administration was continued.
Due to the severity of the injuries Lotow sustained, the medical response teams decided to call in a helicopter which transported the injured man from the field at Northeast 22nd Lane in Hawthorne to the hospital. Unfortunately, due to the extreme destruction the blast wrought on Lotow’s body, he died in the hospital. Currently, the State Fire Marshal is investigating the accident which, while tragic, fortunately did not harm any of the other individuals in the area. Lt. Kutner’s statement included the information that, after seeing the injuries sustained by Lotow, it is clear that anyone standing near him would have sustained similar injuries.
For a free initial consultation, contact the Law Offices of James O. Cunningham, P.A. today at 877-FL-INJURY (877-354-6587).
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.