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ANOTHER electrocution death in a shower in Iraq

Exactly 20 months ago today SSG Ryan Maseth was electrocuted and died in his shower at Radwaniyah Palace Complex in Baghdad. Ryan’s mother, Cheryl Harris mounted an all out assault on the DoD for their total lack of control and oversight on KBR’s LOGCAP contract therefore allowing KBR to kill her son. My mistake….the CID disagreed with the DoD Inspector General and thinks it was an accident. Cheryl’s primary concern has always been the safety of the troops and civilians. It’s because of Cheryl that there is a Task Force SAFE and safer living conditions for EVERYONE in Iraq and Afghanistan.

But sadly that that was not enough for the 25 year old male who died of electrocution in a shower on September 1, 2009 at Camp Olympia in the International Zone (Green Zone) in Baghdad, Iraq. Currently that is all the information I have.

I need your help to fill in the blanks for my readers. We need to get the word out before whoever is responsible can sweep this under the rug and make it look like ANOTHER ACCIDENT!! (That was for the CID in Ryan’s case) Here are my questions.

  1. What is the persons name? Adam Hermanson
  2. Was the correct date Sept 1, 2009? Yes
  3. Was this person a Soldier-if so which unit? No.
  4. Was this person a US civilian-if so who did they work for? Triple Canopy
  5. Was this person a Third Country National-if so what country and who did they work for? American
  6. Was this shower in an Ablution Unit (AB Unit), an existing hard structure or trailer housing (CHU or Hooch)? So far all reports say hardstand existing building.
  7. What is the building/trailer number? Still need this
  8. Who had the Operations & Maintenance (O&M) contract-KBR, Inglett & Stubbs or someone else? Still need this
  9. Has this facility been inspected by Task Force SAFE? If so when? There was an after accident investigation. Still unclear if this building was was inspected prior to this incident or was on the deferred list.
  10. If it has been inspected by TFS who did the repairs? KBR, Inglett & Stubbs or someone else? Still unkown
  11. Are there any outstanding repairs to be done? Still unkown
  12. Have there been any service orders or complaints about shocks in this facility? Still unkown

I’m sure more questions will come up but I think that’s it for now. If you have information other than what is asked for send it as well. If you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment to this post click HERE to send me an email. Anonymous is OK. I will make sure all information gets to the appropriate investigators.

I do believe this is the second electrocution in the International Zone (Green Zone).  Andy Barsamian was the first. He was an Armenian TCN/FN electrician who worked for KBR in the Green Zone at Camp Prosperity (D-2). He was electrocuted and died on November 13, 2005. If you have any information about Andy’s death or information about any other electrocution deaths or serious shock injuries please contact me.

Ms Sparky

UPDATE:  Click HERE for the most recent blog post and media coverage on this incident.

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14 Comments

  1. Comment by Ms Sparky:

    I just want to give a big thank you to all the people out there trying to get accurate information and sending it to me. I will publish the information as soon as I can.

    Keep that info coming.

  2. Comment by Ms Sparky:

    Here is some information I received today from several emails and combined.

    Camp Olympia is across from Union III in the International Zone/Green Zone in Baghdad and houses the Triple Canopy Security Force for the US Embassy an MNSTCI at Union III. As far as they know, KBR was not turned on for O&M at Camp Olympia. If it was, then KBR-USMI would be the responsible Contractor. EAP(I think they meant PAE) also does work at the Embassy, and Triple Canopy may have their own people. August 31st was the last day for the ACL covering UnionIII. MNSTCI is using ALAMCO. It is an Iraqi company who could be involved in this incident. The SOFA (status-of-forces agreement?) requires the use of Iraqi Contractors and Subs on a great percentage of the work. The quality of their work is apparently substandard and KBR is allegedly called in to fix their work all the time. (Hmmm I wonder how they charge that?)

  3. Comment by wondering:

    quote: “hmmm I wonder how they charge that?

    What that has to do with upper post or issue being discussed under this article?

    Ms Sparky’s Response:
    It’s quite simple…if one contractor is being paid to do a job, then KBR is being paid to come in and do it again…there is a problem. Is the DoD/DoS issuing a work order or some other document authorizing KBR to do the work or are they just doing the DoD/DoS a favor and doing to work and the charging it to something else. Does that clarify it for you?

    Any contract experts out there want to chime in.

  4. Comment by trilogysgirl702:

    I have a family member who you could possibly be talking about, can you please tell me where you got this information from??

    Ms Sparky’s Response:
    I do not divulge my sources of information but as you are now aware, it has been confirmed and we are in fact talking about your brother-in-law Adam Hermanson.

  5. Comment by missionjustice702:

    Adam Hermanson my son is the person your talking about that died 0n 09/01/09 at camp olympia (in the shower) . He was employed with triple canopy for approx 3 months,prior to his employment with triple canopy he was in the USAF security forces and was deployed 4 times prior to his death. Triple canopy has been very vague on their answers. And there has been alot of discrepencies and changes in their info. We as a family believe that this is “foul play” or negligence or homicide. We’re starving for answers and we would appreciate any info you have regarding this matter.

    If you have any information please contact Ms Sparky and she can get you in touch with us.

    Ms Sparky’s Response:
    My most heartfelt condolences to you and your family. I will do ANYTHING in my power to help find the answers as to why Adam died of what is an apparent electrocution in the shower. And to find out who is responsible.

  6. Comment by bigface85:

    How are doing Ms Hermanson? Im sorry to hear that Adam got killed in Iraq. I served over there with him in 07 at Camp Bucca Iraq. He was a heart felt person and biggest wishes out to your family. Every one that was in Iraq with us, is deeply sadden by this occurrence. i wish his family the best of wishes in this terrible time.

    Ms Sparky’s Response:
    Thank you. I will make sure they see this. Thank you for serving.

  7. Comment by bigface85:

    Ms Sparky, can you possibly get Adam’s family information or give them my email address. thanks.

    Ms Sparky’s Response:
    I will forward yours to them.

  8. Comment by Charles M. Smith:

    At the beginning of the Iraqi conflict, KBR was the operations and maintenance contractor for the Green (International) Zone, under LOGCAP III. They were doing this in 2005 when I left the program. While they still may do some work there, I understand their presence has been reduced over time.

    Since then there has been a strong move to hire Iraqi firms for some of this work. I would imagine the State Department is particularly sensitive to this issue.

    Camp Olympia is not listed as a military site, so is probably limited to Triple Canopy, who may also hire the O&M contractor.

    The Nation web-site has an article on this which adds to the information in the AP news relase of yesterday.

  9. Comment by Sam:

    Camp Olympia was built by First Kuwaiti Construction Co. from Kuwait, the same company that built the New Embassy Compound in Baghdad. Prior to acceptance of Olympia or the Embassy, there were many discrepencies and deficiencies reported with the wiring, plumbing, fire protection and the overall construction of both facilities.

    KBR had nothing to do with the construction or electrical of these facilities.

    My heart felt prayers and condolences go out to the family of young Adam Hermanson.

    Ms Sparky, if you would like to know more or gain more information on Camp Olympia or the NEC, please contact me at my given email.

    Ms Sparky’s Response:
    Why yes I would….I just emailed you!

  10. Comment by Matt:

    My deepest heartfelt apologies to the family and friends of Adam. The security contracting industry is truly saddened by his loss. I did not work with him, but he sounded like a good man.

  11. Comment by Ms Sparky:

    I have updated the answers to the questions in this post….

    My readers are awesome. Keep that information coming. You may have that one little piece of info that breaks this case wide open.

  12. Comment by Ms Sparky:

    It has been confirmed that Camp Olympia is across the road (SW) from Camp Prosperity near Check Point 12. When I say road I am talking about the same main road that goes from Check Point 12 NW the traffic circle which used to “not so lovingling” to refer to as the “circle of death” because people didn’t know how to use them and would go the wrong way.

    From what my pics are showing it is all hardstand existing structures. Now they could have added something since these pics were taken.

    So…We need more information about this camp.

  13. Comment by Forseti:

    I have been asking a lot of questions and so far it doesn’t appear that First Kuwaiti (FKTC) had anything to do with Camp Olympia. Here are some questions I have for the investigators:

    Who was in charge of the land allocation and contract awards in the Green Zone during the construction of Camp Olympia, RIO, CPA, PMO, USACE, or the contractor?

    Was the camp built or occupied prior to the discovery of the faulty pop-off valves on water heaters and massive country-wide inspection and replacement that occurred around 2005?

    If so, was there an inspection and who performed the inspection?

    What is the history of the O&M contracts related to this camp?

    Was Triple Canopy required to maintain their camp and its facilities?

    Was this camp inspected during Task Force Safe, for electrical?

    So far I have several very reliable sources currently in the IZ and also stateside who have stated that First Kuwaiti never was associated with work on Camp Olympia. It was most likely an Iraqi contractor, possibly Almco http://www.usaasc.info/alt_online/article.cfm?iID=0906&aid=02, that did the build-out or rehab of existing buildings on the camp. The fact that this appears to have happened in a hardstand and First Kuwaiti did not work on hardstand buildings and they do not provide O&M services supports this. First Kuwaiti provided pre-fabricated buildings (trailers) usually manufactured by Red Sea Housing Services http://www.redseahousing.com.

    p.s. I am very disappointed in Jeremy Scahill and believe he took advantage of a family’s grief for personal gain. Also, he really needs to spend some time in the “heavily fortified green zone” as he calls the IZ. Those of us that have been there have laughed at that description for years.

  14. Comment by MrsAdamHemanson:

    I am very appreciative to all who are doing what they can for my husband. I am still trying to understand how all of this happened. I didn’t think finding who had the contract would be this difficult. I still have yet to find this information out. No one has answers and no one will speak with me. I get the “I’ll have someone call you” and they don’t. My husband served 6 1/2 years active duty in the Air Force, then took this job in Iraq again. He is a true hero, he loved what he did and took great pride in it. I think it’s sad this is how our heros are treated. My husband along with the other 18 who have died the same way were just doing their job, fighting so you and I can sleep well at night and this is how they are respected? I’m disgusted. I served 4 years with Adam in the AF and not once did we hear of situations like this. We knew the living conditions in Iraq were horrible b/c we lived in it, but never did we hear of electrocutions. They keep sweeping it under the carpet. Not this time, I won’t allow it. My husband was a fighter; he fought for me, his family and his friends. Now I fight for him. I devote every sec of my day to Adam and I won’t give up on him. I will put a stop to this. If someone would have just done their stupid job I’d still have my husband. I fear for the whoever is responsible, b/c they will hurt for this! I love Adam more than anything and he is my whole world, how dare anyone take him away from me!

    Ms Spark’s Response:
    Mrs Hermanson thank you for this candid personal comment. I would like to express my most sincere condolences to you and your family. The loss of your husband in this manner is unconscionable. I can not even fathom the level of pain you and your family endure each day.

    My commitment to you and your family is this: I will continue to investigate and blog about Adams death asking questions until we get the truth. There are people who have the answers, we just need to find them. I am on your side.

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