We're reporters who investigated a power plant accident that burned five people to death – and discovered what the company knew beforehand that could have prevented it. Ask us anything.
Our short bio: We’re Neil Bedi, Jonathan Capriel and Kathleen McGrory, reporters at the Tampa Bay Times. We investigated a power plant accident that killed five people and discovered the company could have prevented it. The workers were cleaning a massive tank at Tampa Electric’s Big Bend Power Station. Twenty minutes into the job, they were burned to death by a lava-like substance called slag. One left a voicemail for his mother during the accident, begging for help. We pieced together what happened that day, and learned a near identical procedure had injured Tampa Electric employees two decades earlier. The company stopped doing it for least a decade, but resumed amid a larger shift that transferred work from union members to contract employees. We also built an interactive graphic to better explain the technical aspects of the coal-burning power plant, and how it erupted like a volcano the day of the accident.
(our fourth reporter is out sick today)
EDIT: Thanks so much for your questions and feedback. We're signing off. There's a slight chance I may still look at questions from my phone tonight. Please keep reading.