Electrical worker killed as swirling storm moved in

A city of Alcoa electrical worker trying to help amid Monday's windstorm was killed after being struck by a falling tree, according to the city.

Brian Huffstetler, 29, was married with two young children, according to Tricia Tipton, the city's public information officer.

The Blount County Sheriff's Office is investigating.

About 6 p.m. Monday, a time when wind gusts were raging to as much as 60 mph in Blount and Sevier counties, Huffstetler was part of a crew sent down from the city to help troubleshoot in the Walland area. High winds on Monday knocked down trees across East Tennessee, causing power outages.

Huffstetler, an electric line technician, was working in the Hughes Road Loop area of Walland in Blount County, according to Tipton.

While climbing a utility pole, Huffstetler was struck by a falling tree, according to Tipton, who described it as a "freak accident."

Huffstetler was taken to Blount Memorial Hospital and was pronounced dead a short time later, according to the Blount County Sheriff's Office.

No one else was injured, Tipton said.

He is survived by his wife Katie, two small children and his parents, Rick and Mary Alice.

"He was a dedicated, energetic, and enthusiastic employee who will be greatly missed. Alcoa City staff requests prayers for Katie and the family, and they also request that their privacy be honored as they mourn Brian’s passing," a statement from the Sheriff's Office reads.

Service information for Huffstetler was not available.

A GoFundMe account has been created to help the family with funeral expenses and can be viewed here.


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