Monday, August 8, 2016

Aquarium worker allegedly tries to sabotage life-support systems

Fishy business

Posted by Dustin Waters on Mon, Aug 8, 2016 at 5:03 PM

S.C. AQUARIUM
  • S.C. Aquarium
A man working at the South Carolina Aquarium found himself in hot water after allegedly shutting off life-support systems that control the facility’s Great Ocean Tank.

According to an incident report from the Charleston Police Department, aquarium technicians first spotted a problem on July 10 when one of the filters for the two-story, 385,000-gallon tank was found to be no longer working. Later in the afternoon, another alarm notified staff of a similar problem with one of the tank’s pumps. Upon investigation, staff found that one of the electrical breakers was in the off position — not tripped, but manually manipulated, according to the report.

Three days later, life-support personnel received three more alarms reporting the same symptoms. At this time, a facility electrician searched for any electrical issues that would have caused these problems. The next day, aquarium staff noticed five of the breakers had been turned off. The equipment was soon restarted without any permanent damage. It was at this time that they placed a GoPro camera in the panel room to further investigate. Within an hour, the report says, the suspect was seen turning off one of the panel breakers as he walked through the room. Evidence was then turned over to the Charleston Police Department.

According to aquarium spokesperson Kate Dittloff, the individual is no longer working at the aquarium and was provided through a temporary staffing agency, working with housekeeping staff. No creatures were harmed, Dittloff says, and the matter has been referred to the police.

Charleston Police Department spokesperson Charles Francis says the incident is still under investigation.

Cover photo from Flickr user askmanny

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