Redhook Brewery employee dies from exploding keg accident

Discussion in 'Beer News' started by Todd, Apr 24, 2012.

  1. Todd

    Todd Founder (1,700) Colorado Aug 23, 1996 Staff Member Verified Subscriber

    Update (4/27):
    The following is a statement from Redhook Brewery.

    The employee's name has been released. Ben Harris (26), a newlywed with a child on the way. Our deepest condolences go out to his wife and the rest of his family.

    In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully requests that memorial contribution be made to the: The Alysha Miller Harris Baby Fund c/o TD Bank, 20 International Drive, Portsmouth, NH 03801, (603) 430-3812, to benefit his unborn child.


    A tragic day for the beer community. This morning at the Redhook Brewery in Portsmouth, New Hampshire a keg failed, exploded and critically injured an employee. He sustained serious injuries to his chest and head, and unfortunately passed away.

    Our thoughts go out to the employee, his family, friends and everyone at Redhook.

    (Reposted as the condition of the employee changed.)
  2. foobula

    foobula Savant (340) Illinois Dec 14, 2009

    How tragic :(

    Condolences to everyone affected. And 'thank you' to all the brewers from whose sweat and skill we benefit.
  3. HopsJunkiedotcom

    HopsJunkiedotcom Savant (470) Florida Dec 24, 2010 Verified

    God, that's awful. Raising a pint to that poor guy and his family tonight.
  4. Such a heartbreaking story. My thoughts are with the man's family, friends, and the Red Hook crew.
    JrGtr likes this.
  5. smutty33

    smutty33 Advocate (705) Connecticut Jun 12, 2009

    Wow,terrible news.Thoughts and prayers go out to him and his family.:(
  6. pinkgrenade

    pinkgrenade Savant (345) California Aug 19, 2011 Verified

    oh no i made another thread about it :/ sorry!!

    that is such a sad thing to hear
  7. Vav

    Vav Advocate (505) Illinois Jul 27, 2008


    RBCORCORAN Savant (430) Massachusetts May 18, 2009 Verified

    Thoughts and prayers go out to all family and friends. Such a tragic shame.
  9. dsal89

    dsal89 Advocate (505) Indiana Jul 6, 2008


    That is terrible to hear :(

    THoughts are going out to his family
  10. MaxSpang

    MaxSpang Advocate (515) Ohio Jan 28, 2011

    Awful, awful news. My heart goes to Redhook and everyone affected.
  11. sullenbee

    sullenbee Savant (340) Michigan Jan 15, 2010

    That is awful. My condolences to his friends, family, and coworkers.
  12. StuartCarter

    StuartCarter Savant (485) Alabama Apr 25, 2006

    joining in the condolences for the family and co-workers. This is truly awful to hear :(
  13. frazbri

    frazbri Advocate (695) Ohio Oct 29, 2003

    Sad news. Prayers and thoughts to his family, friends and coworkers.
  14. My heart goes out to friends and family left behind.
  15. TWStandley

    TWStandley Champion (810) Massachusetts Jan 15, 2008 Verified Subscriber

    Terrible news, I drive by Redhook every day on my way to work. Will raise a few glasses to him and his family. I am hoping he was passionate about beer and therefore at least passed away doing something he loved. Truly tragic.
  16. Our prayers and condolences to the worker's family and everyone at Redhook Northeast

    Jason Hunter
    Berkshire Brewing
  17. Well...shit. That sucks.
  18. cavedave

    cavedave Poobah (1,060) New York Mar 12, 2009 Verified

    In every great enterprise their is danger and tragedy. Raising a glass in his honor.
  19. NWer

    NWer Advocate (720) Washington Mar 10, 2009 Verified

    Very very sad indeed. A special bond with my home town of Ballard (Seattle neighborhood) where Redhook got its start. I cut my craft teeth imbibing on a Ballard Bitter many years ago.
    My thoughts and prayers to his family.
  20. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poobah (1,345) Wyoming Sep 14, 2002 Verified

    I drank a lot of Ballard Bitter myself.

    My deepest condolences to the family and friends. I'm not a brewer but I feel like I've lost a member of the family.:(
  21. skivtjerry

    skivtjerry Advocate (585) Vermont Mar 10, 2006

  22. skivtjerry

    skivtjerry Advocate (585) Vermont Mar 10, 2006

  23. Todd

    Todd Founder (1,700) Colorado Aug 23, 1996 Staff Member Verified Subscriber

  24. joepais

    joepais Savant (380) Maine Oct 5, 2007

    foobula likes this.
  25. SteelersX

    SteelersX Advocate (500) New York Jan 30, 2011 Verified

    That absolutely sucks!
  26. tai4ji2x

    tai4ji2x Advocate (595) Massachusetts Aug 10, 2007 Verified

    damn... RIP man... :(
  27. jaxon53

    jaxon53 Advocate (745) Connecticut Mar 1, 2006 Verified Subscriber

    This is terrible news
  28. AtrumAnimus

    AtrumAnimus Savant (380) Texas Nov 25, 2002

    What a tragic loss with such terrible timing and missing out on the joy of fatherhood. I cna only wish the best for his wife and unborn child.
    Blueribbon666 likes this.
  29. You don't go to work in that field and even consider such an outcome. My wife and I have our third children coming in July and this story really saddens me. My heart hurts for his wife and parents.
  30. FrankLloydMike

    FrankLloydMike Advocate (555) Massachusetts Aug 16, 2006 Verified Subscriber

    This is an incredibly sad and tragic accident. Seacoast Beverage Lab has a note from Redhook about the tragedy. Apparently, Ben Harris, who was killed, had worked at Redhook for seven years and his wife also works there. It's an illustration of the community that surrounds craft beer--unfortunately an unbelievably sad illustration, in this case.
  31. airbag11

    airbag11 Aficionado (185) New York Feb 17, 2012 heart goes out to his fam and friends. Craft beer lost a brother and a good man.
  32. evilc

    evilc Initiate (0) California Jan 27, 2012

    The detail lists plastic keg. Do these have a greater occurence of such an event?
  33. Blueribbon666

    Blueribbon666 Advocate (600) Ohio Jul 4, 2008 Verified

    :( life is so if the story isn't tragic enough, having a child on the way is truly a further kick in the zipper, just horrible.
  34. dauss

    dauss Advocate (670) Colorado Aug 9, 2003 Verified Subscriber

    Plastic kegs are relatively new to the market. The usage percentage is very small when compared to steel kegs. There are few companies that are manufacturing plastic kegs, so it is difficult to say if there are many "near-miss" events or other reliability issues with these types of kegs.
  35. djsmith1174

    djsmith1174 Advocate (530) Minnesota Aug 21, 2005 Verified

    My deepest condolences to the family and his coworkers. We tend not to think of brewing as job with risk, but the risk is there as with any job that requires manual labor. Hats off to all of you whose line of work has any risk of accidental injury associated with it. You guys keep the world moving. ;)
  36. Ungertaker

    Ungertaker Advocate (540) Minnesota Apr 30, 2010 Verified

    Plastic is not at all safe for pressurized fluids if there is a potential for trapped air. I work as a pipefitter and witnessed an explosion firsthand. We were putting a pressure test on a PVC piping system. As the system was filling with water, a fellow pipefitter was tightening bolts on a flange attached to a fitting. After the flange was properly tightened, the fitting exploded (the system was not fitted with a device to bleed the air from the system during the fill). The pipefitter reacted by rolling down the hill the chiller sat atop. If he had not moved, the shard that grazed his face would have likely caused severe injury. After the refinery's invetigation, the determination was made that air trapped in the system caused the explosion to occur.

    Please, if any of you work with plastic (either at home or on the job), be extremely careful. If you use it for brewing or storage of beer, I urge you to stop; the fermentation process can cause pressure to build up to dangerous levels that plastic cannot handle.

    My thoughts and prayers are with Ben's family and friends after this tragic occurance.
  37. Hopscotch

    Hopscotch Initiate (0) May 15, 2012

    awful. wish I hadn't opened this thread. truly horrible