Boy, 8, hospitalized after touching downed power line

Published: Aug. 31, 2022 at 4:34 AM CDT
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WARREN, Mich. (WXYZ) - An 8-year-old boy was hospitalized in critical condition after police say he and a sibling touched a downed power line near a Michigan elementary school.

The incident happened just after 9 a.m. Tuesday as several children walked through a blocked-off area with damaged power lines outside McKinley Elementary School in Warren. Police say one damaged line hung several feet from the ground.

A witness described the scene as terrifying, saying the 8-year-old victim lifted the live power line, so his brother could walk through.

“His hands caught on fire,” the witness said.

Police already in the area for an unrelated call saw the boy clinging to a live wire.

“There was severe burns,” said Warren Police Department Commissioner Bill Dwyer.

Dwyer says officers pulled the boy and his 10-year-old brother, who was trying to help, off the wire and immediately rushed them to the hospital.

“They didn’t stop there. They didn’t wait for EMS. They didn’t wait for anybody. They immediately put that 8-year-old in their car and immediately, with lights and sirens going, took that 8-year-old along with a 10-year-old brother to Detroit Moross,” Dwyer said.

The 8-year-old was hospitalized in critical condition. His older brother was not seriously hurt but is still being evaluated. Two police officer were also checked out after they, too, came in contact with the power line.

Police say the two boys were mistakenly dropped off by a grandmother, who was unaware the school was closed due to a power outage.