Two killed in West Texas

Accident: two electrocuted while moving pump jack

Two workers were killed and another was injured when they were electrocuted while moving a pump jack at an oilfield in West Texas.

The men had disassembled the pump jack and were moving it "from one location to the other" in a truck just before noon on Wednesday, the Mitchell County Sheriff's Office said.

The incident occurred about eight miles north-west of Westbrook, in the Permian basin.

One of the men was pulling a cable behind the truck as it was backing up when the cable came in contact with some electrical lines.

The man holding the cable and another man walking with his hand on the side of truck were both electrocuted. First responders treated them on site. They were taken to hospital where they were later pronounced dead.

The Sheriff's office identified the deceased as 24-year-old Laban Robokoff and 35-year-old Harvey McKinney.

Another worker, Steven McKinney - Harvey's brother - was injured in the accident. He was flown to a hospital in Lubbock, Texas, where his condition has "improved", said Mitchell County Sheriff Patrick Toombs, adding that McKinney would likely be released later in the week.

He has burns on his fingers and other parts of his body, Toombs said.

All the victims were employees of Midland-based, Rayco Pumping Unit Service. They were contracted for work at a site operated by Houston-based Quantum Resources.

A Quantum spokesman said the company had no immediate comment. The company "is still investigating the incident and trying to gather all the information around it", the spokesman said.

The US Occupational Safety & Health Administration is also investigating.

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