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Deaths Due to Improper Guardrails on Tubular Welded-Frame Scaffolds

Case Reports

The following Case Reports of falls investigated by OSHA illustrate how seemingly innocent workplace activities can have deadly consequences.

  • An employee preparing masonry fascia for removal from a building fell from the third level of a tubular welded-frame scaffold. No guarding system was provided for the scaffold. Further, the platform was coated with ice, creating a slippery condition.
  • A contract employee was taking measurements from an unguarded scaffold inside a reactor vessel when he either lost his balance or stepped backwards and fell 14 feet, sustaining fatal injuries.
  • An employee was installing overhead boards from a scaffold platform consisting of two 2" x 10" boards with no guardrails. He lost his balance, fell 7 feet to the floor, and was fatally injured.
  • A laborer was working on the third level of a tubular welded-frame scaffold which was covered with ice and snow.  Planking on the scaffold was inadequate, there was no guardrail, and no access ladder for the various scaffold levels. The worker slipped and fell head first approximately 20 feet to the pavement below.

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