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Business tied to Scouts probe closes

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Business tied to Scouts probe closes

 

http://www.newsvirginian.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=WNV/MGArticle/WNV_BasicArticle&c=MGArticle&cid=1031784699272

http://tinyurl.com/7rg26

 

By MICHAEL L. OWENS

News Virginian Staff Writer

Saturday, August 27, 2005

 

A Fishersville company has closed for business just weeks after falling under the microscope of two federal investigations into the accidental electrocutions of four Boy Scout leaders.

 

Tents & Events, located in the Ivy Ridge Industrial Park, shut its doors sometime last month, owner Brett Hayes confirmed Friday. The company supplied some of the tents used during the National Boy Scout Jamboree that kicked off late July at Fort A.P. Hill.

 

Federal eyes focused on the company after four adult scout leaders apparently were electrocuted while helping Tents & Events contractors pitch a tent under a power line.

 

The two injured contractors have not been identified. One remained hospitalized in the burn unit at VCU Medical Center earlier this month, according to a Richmond Times-Dispatch report. Another contractor had been treated and released.

 

Hayes confirmed that Tents & Events, a division of RentQuick.com, closed last month, but he refused to disclose why.

 

Im really not at liberty to say, he said.

 

Tents & Events business service license, filed under RentQuick.com, remains valid, according to the Augusta County Commissioner of the Revenue Office.

 

Mike Harman, the Richmond-based liability attorney representing Tents & Events, could not be reached for comment Friday. A secretary said he was on vacation in the Shenandoah Valley.

 

Looking into the electrocution is the Army Criminal Investigation Command and the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

 

OSHA is currently investigating and we dont comment on open investigations, said spokeswoman Leni Fortson. I can confirm that OSHA did not shut [Tents & Events] down.

 

Army investigators could not be reached for comment.

 

Contact Michael L. Owens at 932-3563 or mowens@newsvirginian.com

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I would like to know who made the decision to place the tent in that location. Was it the contractors decision or were they directed to place it there by someone in BSA?

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Each troop was assigned the area in which they were to set up their camp. No one could expect that a troop would bring their own massive dining tent like that. It was monstrously tall. All of the other troops were using patrol-sized dining fly arrangments, that were no more than seven feet or so tall. That troop's dining flys (there were two) were huge, rivaling the size of the national-level facilities, such as staff dining halls and the like.

 

Regardless, anyone who could look up could have seen that there were power lines overhead. I fear that, because the troop had spent the money to rent the huge tents (likely as way of showing off -- "bigger is better"), they knowlingly went ahead and erected them, in the expectation that, by "being careful," they would avoid tragedy.

 

Heck, the got the first tent up without incident.

 

- Oren

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"Heck, the got the first tent up without incident.

 

Actually not, there was only one tent. it had two poles. They got the first pole up safely but not the first tent.

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Bobwhite:

 

It looked like two tents, but I'll take your word for it. I didn't get all that close to it.

 

I still can't beleive that any contingent would bring such a gigantic tent.

 

- Oren

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I have always just assumed that they were assisting in setting up the staff dining tent for their sub-camp. Is it true that it was a dining tent for the contingent? If so, how did they get that much space? Each troop has a plot of land marked with stakes and string. We had 22 standard BSA wall tents and 5 dining flys and you couldn't hardly walk anywhere without having to step over guy lines. Most of the large staff type tents I saw at Jambo would have just about entirely covered a troops plot. Given that you often have neighbors on both side and behind you, you can't just throw up a huge tent next to your troop site.

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This was one large tent leased from an outside firm by the contingent. They wanted to be able to feed everyone unter one Tent. They brought their own contractors to help set it up. A few other troops at jamboree also brought these huge tents, but not many. The difference here is where they chose to set them up.

 

This is another good example of how misinformation and gossip gets people to erroneously blame the BSA.

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I do not if that other tent was with this same group or not, do you? As I mentioned there were afew others out there like it. My information came from a conversation I had with an adult from that contingent, a photo in the local paper appeared to confirm his description of the tent.

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Bob, I'm sure you can read the article just as well as I can quote it; here's the immediately preceding paragraph:Anderson, a 38-year-old woodworker from Logan, Utah, said the Alaska group arrived a little after noon July 25 and began setting up at the top of the sloping campsite. He said his troop had just about finished pitching all of its tents and that the Alaskans had placed their sleeping tents on the perimeter of an open area where two larger, white tents were to be placed.I won't go into the differences between your eyewitness' account and the account of the eyewitness interviewed for this article.

 

But many news media carried the story that the contractors put up the first tent with no difficulty, but had problems with the second -- again, the details are all in the article I referenced.

 

So, as far as I can tell, nobody is making stuff up or spreading rumours or deliberately trying to make BSA look bad.

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fgoodwin, I do not know if you were at the jamboree or not, but the first reports were that scouts drove tent stakes into underground line, Then it was that a vehicle drove into a power pole, then it was 8 dead in an explosion, then it was scouts from Indiana, then as it was said that adults from Alaska helping to sett up a staff tent,etc etc.

 

Scouters are horrible gossips it seems. I was very pleased that the group I was with stayed quiet until after the directors briefing the next day and we had some info. Then wednesday we met a member of the contigent and got more details.

 

Bottom line, regardless of tent count, the BSA was not involved in the cause and responded quickly and compassionately to the needs of the scouts and their families.

 

 

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If you had read the Alaskan papers account at the council web info you would know thet there was 2 tents. One for each troop. The first one was not under lines at all.

 

The reason the rented these tents was it was cheaper than transporting all the required tarps all the way from Alaska. They did the same thing in 2001. There were other troops at Jambo that did it also.

 

I venture in all the hustle and bustle no one did the simple thing of looking up.

 

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While each unit has an area assigned, the setup in that area is up to the unit.

All of those killed or injured were inside the tent. There was no one on the outside spotting for them.

Might this have something to do with it - Power lines in Alaska mostly if not all underground.

 

 

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