Authorities on Wednesday identified the worker who fell off a barge on the Mississippi River nearly two months ago and drowned.
Micah K. Pittman, 44, of Milton, Fla., drowned soon after he went in the water on Nov. 14 at Point Douglas Beach near Hastings, according to the Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s Office.
Pittman’s death remains under investigation by the Washington County Sheriff’s Office and the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG). The medical examiner’s office has classified his death as accidental.
Pittman was wearing an industry-standard work vest that acts as a life jacket, and “man overboard procedures” were properly engaged after he fell from the deck of the dry cargo barge, the Coast Guard said. Air and water temperatures at the time were both between 30 to 40 degrees, the guard added.
“Our hearts are heavy with the loss of Micah Pittman,” said David Hammond, president of Kentucky-based Inland Marine Service (IMS), on Wednesday. “IMS has been working closely with the USCG investigating officers and are awaiting their report.”
Pittman joined Inland Marine shortly before the incident and was the leader of the barge’s deck crew at the time of his death, Hammond said.
He added that Inland Marine’s safety record is “in good standing with the USCG.”