Cause of man’s death unclear

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Body of Alvord resident discovered near well site

An investigation is under way to discover why a 63-year-old man was found dead near a well site northwest of Krum on Thursday.

Authorities have identified the man as Jimmy Dale Deweber of Alvord.

Officials said the cause of death is still under investigation. His body was found near a spillover of condensate — a natural gas liquid. They suspect no foul play and are awaiting a full report from the medical examiner.

Denton County Death Investigator Troy Taylor said Friday afternoon a ruling on the cause of Deweber’s death is pending a full toxicology report, which could take up to six weeks.

“Investigators have no reason to link the two [gas and death] together at this time,” Sgt. Larry Kish of the Denton County Sheriff’s Office said. “His death is being treated like any other death, and there is no reason he couldn’t have died from natural causes.”

Daren Beaudo, a spokesman with ConocoPhillips, said the company doesn’t believe this was an industrial accident. Enterprise Product Partners, the company for which Deweber worked, was contracted with Burlington Resources, a subsidiary of ConocoPhillips.

Texas Railroad Commission records indicate that it was a natural gas pad site where Deweber’s body was found.

Kish said Deweber was loading condensate from a holding tank into the tank of his truck when something went wrong Thursday.

Being his first run of the morning, he went with an empty tank and had completed filling it up before his death occurred, said Rick Rainey, Enterprise Products Partners spokesman.

Rainey said he wasn’t sure how many years Deweber had been working as a trucker with the company.

“This was a crude oil well site and there was no H2S [hydrogen sulfide] affiliated with what he was working with,” Rainey said.

High concentrations of hydrogen sulfide can cause shock, convulsions, inability to breathe, rapid unconsciousness, coma and death, according to a fact sheet produced by the Occupational Safety and Heath Administration.

Effects can occur within a few breaths, and possibly a single breath, the OSHA fact sheet states.

The site of the death, where four pad sites are located, was in the 5900 block of Barnett Road. Crews from Enterprise are in charge of working on the cleanup, Rainey said. As of late Friday afternoon, he was unsure if crews had completed the clean-up process.

A fatality investigation is being conducted by OSHA, assistant area director Elizabeth Routh said Friday. Routh works for the Region Six office in Fort Worth. OSHA investigations can take up to six months to complete.

 

MEGAN GRAY can be reached at 940-566-6885. Her e-mail address is mgray@dentonrc.com.


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