Kevan Hurst's wonder goal rescued a 1-1 draw for promotion-chasing Southend eight minutes from time and denied Accrington only their second win of 2013.
Hurst belted the ball home from 20 yards, making something out of nothing, for 10-man Southend to take home a point from the Store First Stadium.
Striker James Gray had given struggling Stanley the lead in the 58th minute. The striker got the ball from Rommy Boco on the left of the area and slid through defender Ryan Cresswell's legs and into the bottom of the net.
It looked worse for the Shrimpers when defender Cresswell saw red shortly after when he seemingly pushed Gray towards the dugouts and was sent off for violent conduct.
Stanley, with one win in 13 league games, just could not hold on despite creating the better chances throughout the game.
The first half was one to forget with Gray missing the best chance, firing wide for Stanley with only `keeper Paul Smith to beat.
After the break James Beattie could not connect properly with Boco's right-wing cross as Stanley hunted for their only their second win of the calendar year.
Then the game burst into life with Stanley's goal - their first in more than six hours of football - and the dismissal which got both sets of fans heated.
Peter Murphy was inches away from connecting with Gray's cross as Stanley looked for a second and, after Hurst's leveller, Lee Molyneux forced a superb save from Smith as both sides had to settle for a point.