I talked to some guy at a TV station about the mysterious death of one of the freelance maintenance engineers recently-- (He works on the microwave mountaintop sites...these are the microwave dishes that receive and send the video from trucks in the field. In the course of the conversation I asked about why there was no Golden Gate Bridge camera for a few weeks; he told me Russell Brown, an engineer known in this market for his expertise on remote cameras, transmitter (Sutro Tower), and microwave equipment that made him a go-to guy when the stations needed help in completing projects, had passed away November 26th.
The broadcast vet told me Brown fell off of a 26-foot ladder trying to fix the GG camera. Not clear from who I spoke with if he died that day, or from injuries sustained from the fall. But the maintenance tech I spoke to said that KRON wanted to have control of this project, (they have so little else now they're hanging onto anything to seem relevant), and so the project to upgrade the traffic cameras on certain sites have lagged way behind schedule.
That is why Brown was called in. The maintenance tech said that KRON was updating software on the camera, and not informing anyone involved in the project, so when fixes could have been done via IP address, there was a person on a tall ladder who may have lost his life because someone did not share information.
On Brown's obituary there is no mention of his death on the bridge while working. Some are speculating there might be a lawsuit pending, and of course the GG Bridge Authority is a shadow organization and semi-bureaucrats to boot.
My conversation also included the point that while all during these upgrade projects between the local stations, that all the heads of engineering would fire tons of emails between each other, generating memos and "looking" busy. When Brown died, all emails stopped. Curious.
I did not know Russell Brown but he had a wife and child, and a grandchild. He was 57.
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