Thursday, June 20, 2013
The owner of a paving company who was electrocuted Wednesday when he touched a dump truck that was in contact with a power line had been concerned about the number of wires overhead at the job site, said his sister, who was driving the truck.
Christopher Dixon, 42, the owner of Atlantic Paving Inc. in York, died Wednesday afternoon after he touched the tailgate of the truck while the truck's raised bed touched a live wire, police said.
Around 2 p.m., Dixon and his 38-year-old sister, Melissa Dixon, were paving the driveway of a home on Red Berry Lane, a narrow, tree-lined road off Route 1 in York.
Melissa Dixon said in an interview Thursday that she backed the 10-wheel dump truck into the driveway. Her brother told her to stop the truck and raise the bed to dump hot asphalt.
She said she listened to hear him bang the tailgate to get any extra asphalt off the truck, but didn't hear the noise. Thinking he had gotten a cellphone call and walked away, she decided to get out and bang the tailgate herself.
"I jumped out of the truck and felt a shock on my hand," Melissa Dixon said. "I looked back and saw that my tires were on fire. I saw my brother passed out on the ground. He had blood coming out of him. I realized things were pretty bad."
She said she ran to the house, but the owners were not at home. She then ran to Route 1 and into the Woods to Goods store, and called 911 for help.
"I didn't know what to do. I was scared," she said. "I keep thinking ... I wish I could have done something."
Dixon said her brother was aware of the wires above the driveway, but apparently didn't see them when he told her to stop the truck.
"He knew they were there. All day he told me to be careful of the wires," she said.
Christopher Dixon was lying on the ground when rescue workers arrived, but they could not approach him because of the continuing threat of electrocution.
Even after Central Maine Power Co. shut down electricity to the area, rescue workers had to wait until CMP workers could be sure the wires were grounded and there was no further danger.
Rescue workers attempted CPR, but Dixon was pronounced dead at York Hospital at 3:10 p.m.
The accident is being investigated by the federal workplace safety agency. An inspector for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration visited the scene Thursday and interviewed witnesses, said Karen Billups, assistant area director for OSHA in Maine.
Atlantic Paving was formed in 2005, according to state records.
Christopher Dixon grew up in York and started working for his father's paving business when he was in his early teens. He graduated from York High School in 1988.
He later joined his father's business, Dixon Paving Corp., and worked for it for several years before starting his own company seven years ago. Melissa Dixon said she started working for her brother "a year or two" later.
He employed four people. His company did large and small paving jobs throughout the York area.
"He liked to work a lot," his sister said. "Of course, we would grumble sometimes because we worked late. ... He loved it. He loved to work."
His wife, Linda Dixon, choked up Thursday as she spoke about their life together. When they met at McIntosh College in Dover, N.H., she said, "I knew I was going to marry him."
The couple were married for 18 years. Their 14 year-old daughter, Carrie Dixon, will soon start her freshman year at York High School.
She is a talented dancer, Linda Dixon said, and "nothing made him happier than to see her dance."
He also enjoyed fishing and snowmobiling on the trails near his house.
His mother, Margaret Dixon, said her son was always there when she needed him.
"There wasn't anything he wouldn't have done for me," she said. "I hope he knew how proud I was of him. He was such a good man. I'm going to miss him."
Dixon's memorial service will be held from 3 to 6 p.m. Sunday at the Lucas & Eaton Funeral Home, at 91 Long Sands Road in York. His funeral will be held at 11 a.m. Monday at the York Street Baptist Church.
-- Staff Writer David Hench contributed to this report.
Staff Writer Melanie Creamer can be contacted at 791-6361 or at: