When the hell is enough ever going to be enough for this administration?PITTSBURGH (March 20) - A U.S. House committee chairman has begun an investigation into the electrocutions of at least 12 service members in Iraq, including that of a Pittsburgh soldier killed in January by a jolt of electricity while showering. Staff Sgt. Ryan Maseth, 24, died January 2 of cardiac arrest after being electrocuted while showering at his barracks in Baghdad.
Also Wednesday, Maseth's parents filed a wrongful death lawsuit in Allegheny County Court against KBR Inc., the Houston-based contractor responsible for maintaining Maseth's barracks. An Army investigation found that his death was due to improper grounding of the electric pump that supplied water to the building, Waxman said. Maseth died after an electrical short in the pump sent a current through the pipes. Since 2003, at least 12 service members have died in Iraq as a result of electrocution, according to the Army and Marine Corps.
The Army issued a safety alert that noted five soldiers had been electrocuted that year and improper grounding was a factor in nearly all of the cases. KBR declined to comment on the lawsuit Wednesday, but said it would cooperate with agencies investigating Maseth's death. The company was formerly owned by Halliburton Co., the oil services conglomerate once led by Vice President Cheney.