MARION COUNTY — A freak accident around 1 p.m. Wednesday claimed the life of an Effingham man working on a billboard on east of Centralia.

Zachariah Lock standing on a metal ladder and installing a new fabric on a billboard owned by Dusty’s Sign Service on Route 161 when a metal pole he was placing into a sleeve on the fabric to hold it in place came into contact with an electric line nearby.

Lock was reportedly knocked to the ground and died instantly.

Authorities report an off-duty emergency room nurse was passing by at the time of the accident and saw what happened. She gave Lock CPR until he was transported to SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The Marion County Coroner’s Office, Marion County Sheriff’s Department, and Ameren are all investigating the incident.

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