RESOURCE

December 2014

Safety Notes

Accident Report

  • Incident | Worker falls from aerial lift bucket
  • Business | Electrical construction
  • Employee | Electrician

Two journeyman electricians were relocating power poles to service job trailers at a landfill. They were using an older digger derrick truck that had a boom and an auger for drilling holes. The end of the boom had a motorized hoist for setting the poles and there were two side-by-side buckets on a separate onboard aerial work platform at the end of the boom.

At the start of the day, they drilled two holes for poles near a tall shop building and set the first of two 50-foot poles without incident.

They picked up the second pole using the hoist cable at the end of the digger derrick boom. A synthetic-fiber lifting strap was wrapped around the pole and attached to the hook. Another rope was attached to the eye of the strap so that the strap could be loosened from the ground. After they set the pole, one of the electricians was unable to remove the strap by tugging on it, so he decided to remove it from the aerial platform.

He climbed the onboard fixed ladder, grabbed the top of the bucket with both hands, and placed one foot on its outside lower lip. As he swung his other foot over the top of the bucket, it swiveled vertically and he fell, hitting parts of the truck and landing on the ground. His injuries included two fractured vertebrae and soft tissue damage.

Click for larger images

graphic of accident, part 1

graphic of accident, part 2

Findings

The equipment was not regularly inspected and maintained in safe operating condition:

The manufacturer's operation and maintenance manual was available.

The incident was not reported to the nearest Oregon OSHA field office within 24 hours.

Violations

437-003-0415(1): "Equipment and rigging shall be regularly inspected and maintained in safe operating condition."

437-003-0465: "The manufacturer's operation and maintenance manual shall be available. The operating instructions, proper sequence, and maintenance procedures prescribed by the manufacturer should be followed."

437-001-0700(21)(c): "Report overnight hospitalization 24 hours after occurrence or employer knowledge of one or more employees to Oregon OSHA at 1-800-922-2689 or 503-378-3272."

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