Construction Incidents Investigation Engineering Reports
Construction Incidents Investigation Engineering Reports
December 2007: (PDF)
- The new bridge under construction on U.S. 90 to connect the towns of Bay St. Louis and Pass Christian was to replace a nearby old bridge destroyed by Katrina. The incident occurred when the steel forms of a bridge column suddenly collapsed and fell into the bay while the form was being filled with wet concrete. Nine workers fell with the column into the bay. Two workers were killed.
October 2007: (PDF)
- A new medical office building was under construction when the long span wood roof trusses collapsed. The workers erected the trusses a few hours before and were installing temporary and permanent bracings and purlins at the time of the incident. Shortly before the incident, three bundles of 2x6s to be used as purlins and braces were placed over the top chord of the center trusses. Two workers were seriously injured.
February 2007: (PDF)
- The project, 40,000 square foot retail and office complex with two levels of parking, was in the first phase of construction, i.e., excavation and site stabilization, when the incident occurred. A steep excavated slope, more than 40 foot high suddenly collapsed. The collapsed earth deposits buried a nearby excavator and killed the operator inside the cab.
November 2006: (PDF)
- The project consisted of demolishing a steel bridge 850 ft. long and 27 ft. wide with twelve spans of varying lengths. The steel girders' depths varied from 48" to 114" and the bridge deck consisted of a 9" thick concrete composite slab. During demolition, two spans collapsed in an unplanned manner, killing one worker and injuring another.
August 2006: (PDF)
- Two construction workers fell twenty stories to the ground and died when the stripping platform they were working on failed. The incident occurred during the construction of a 22-story condominium building. The platform was supported on structural framing resting on the 19th floor concrete slab and on the underside of the 20th floor slab. There were three other employees on the platform at the time of the failure, but they were able to hang onto the railing and the net, and were rescued.
February 2006: (PDF)
- The project consisted of construction of a large, one-story concrete and steel structure for an indoor swimming and diving pool with bleachers. The roof trusses were curved and spanned 190 feet and weighed approximately 80,000 pounds. The incident involved the collapse of three long span steel roof trusses and several steel bar joists that fell approximately 50 feet to the ground. Two workers were killed, 2 injured.
December 2004: (PDF)
- The project consisted of ten 3-story buildings to construct 82 townhouses. Tunnel forms were used by the construction team for casting concrete on the floors and in the walls. The incident occurred while concrete was being poured on the third floor of one building. A portion of the building collapsed killing two workers and injuring three others. The building was approximately 53 ft. wide and 150 ft. long.
April 2004: (PDF)
- A parking garage, part of the Tropicana Casino and Resort expansion project collapsed during construction. The ten-story parking garage was designed as a cast in place concrete structure with precast floor filigree system. At the time of the incident, concrete was being cast on the 8th level. The collapse resulted in the failure of five levels of an exterior bay. Four workers were killed and 20 injured.
January 2004: (PDF)
- The 1,000 ft. guyed tower was being modified to add a new HDTV antenna and additional equipment. Installation of horizontal braces and replacing the top 14 ft. with a new 6 ft. tower section were to be undertaken. The crew had positioned a track and a gin pole on one face of the tower as a means to hoist the new antenna. The load line was attached to a block on the tower some thirty feet above the base. As the load line was tensioned, the tower collapsed killing three employees.
December 2003: (PDF)
- Four employees were placing grout bags and other materials on the cantilever section of the scaffold at the Hathaway Bridge construction site in Panama City, FL. As the grout bags were placed on the cantilever section, the scaffold suddenly failed, causing the employees to fall into the water. One worker was killed, 3 injured.
March 2003: (PDF)
- The 1965-foot high -KDUH-TV antenna tower was under contract to replace certain tower diagonals and struts to support a new high-definition TV antenna and other equipment. The tower consisted of 63 sections, each 30-foot high. The crew was replacing existing diagonals with new diagonals when the tower collapsed. Three workers were killed.
February 2003: (PDF)
- Two 142 ft. high scaffold towers collapsed, killing five workers and injuring 10 others. The towers were erected to provide a working platform for the facade renovation of a 1914 era 20-story steel framed masonry building. The face bricks and steel window lintels had already been removed from the 6th to the 14th floors and the cement plastering work was being done. At the time of the incident, two workers were manually hoisting a cement bag to the top of the scaffold tower.
December 2002: (PDF)
- The project consisted of fabrication and erection of structural steel framing consisting of round steel pipes to support two billboard signs, on the two opposite faces, each weighing approximately 5,400 pounds. The workers engaged in electrical and bill board installation were finishing the newly erected sign. The billboard structural framing suddenly collapsed killing all three workers and crushing the cars parked below.
September 2002: (PDF)
- A tilt-up concrete wall 23' high and 20' wide, weighing 40,000 pounds, suddenly collapsed crushing three workers. The structure comprised of steel framing with steel columns, steel joist girders, joists and tilt-up wall panels on the perimeter.
December 2001: (PDF)
- The project consisted of construction of a six-story parking garage. The 55-foot long mast climbing platform consisted of 20 foot fixed platform plus extensions on either side supported in the center by a single mast. Three sections, each 5-foot long were installed on one side, and four sections were installed on the other side. The side, which had four sections collapsed. 3 workers were injured.
May 2000: (PDF)
- A 44 ft. tall reinforcing steel cage weighing 80 tons fell over and killed one of the two workers working near the top of the cage. The deceased worker was caught between the collapsing reinforcing cage and the concrete footing surface. At the time of the incident, the two workers were installing horizontal ties. The wind at the time of the incident was about 25 mph.
April 1998: (PDF)
- The 1889-foot high antenna tower consisting of 64 sections, each 30 feet high, was being rehabilitated by replacing selected horizontal and diagonal members and guy wires. The workers were 1480' above the base replacing existing diagonal members when the tower collapsed. Three workers were killed.
January 1998: (PDF)
- Construction was underway at the Portland International Airport in Portland, Oregon to add four additional levels of parking to transform the existing two-story precast concrete parking garage into a seven level parking structure. Two partially completed bays of structural steel, most of which were erected the same day, collapsed killing three ironworkers.
March 1997: (PDF)
- A 1462 feet high antenna tower, collapsed while "jumping" a gin pole with a track near the top of the tower to replace an existing antenna. The workers fell to the ground with the falling sections of the tower. Three workers were killed.
June 1996: (PDF)
- A steel structure under construction 176 ft. x 312 ft. and 130 ft. high collapsed at the construction site for the Olympic Aquatic Center in Atlanta, Georgia. The structure, was an addition to the existing pool structure. Just prior to the collapse, the steel erection crew had erected a steel frame and a pair of steel joists spanning 176 ft. from an existing structure to the erected steel frame. The failure occurred within 15 to 30 minutes after the crane was released from the paired joists. The incident did not result in any injuries.
Only selected reports are posted on this webpage. For assistance with any of the reports, figures or illustrations, please contact the Directorate of Construction at (202) 693-2020.
- OSHA finds that structural engineers must specify the order and manner of replacing existing diagonals and strut members of cellular towers. Onsite judgement by workers engaged in retrofit of towers has often proven to be disastrous. (October 2018)
- OSHA finds that the contractors and engineers should consider turbulent winds causing uplift and vortex in areas exposed to tropical storms and hurricane. OSHA recommends analysis based on Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) calculations. (September 2018)
- OSHA finds that the contractor not laying the boom and jib in the face of impending wind in accord with the crane manufacturer's instruction caused the collapse of the crane. (July 2016)
- OSHA finds that contractors must exhibit abundance of caution and supervision during dismantling of mast climbing platforms, not to overload the platforms causing failure of the mast. (August 2015)
- U.S. Department of Labor Announces Initiative to Increase Awareness Of Trenching and Excavation Hazards and Solutions, OSHA News Release (November 28, 2018)
- U.S. Department of Labor Cites Five Contractors for Safety Violations Following Florida Pedestrian Bridge Collapse, OSHA News Release (September 18, 2018)
- U.S. Department of Labor Cites Pennsylvania Crane Manufacturer for Exposing Employees to Safety Hazards after Fatal Crane Collapse, DOL News Release (August 6, 2018)
- U.S. Department of Labor Cites Communication Tower Contractor Following Three Fatalities at Miami Work Site, OSHA News Release (March 27, 2018)
- OSHA finds that overloading led to Providence, Rhode Island, circus fall Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus cited for serious safety violation. OSHA Regional News Release, (November 4, 2014).
- US Labor Department and Federal Communications Commission announce working group to prevent fatalities in telecommunications industry. OSHA News Release, (October 14, 2014).
- Structural Collapses During Construction - Lessons Learned, (1990-2008) (PDF). STRUCTURE magazine. OSHA investigated 96 structural collapses during construction involving fatalities and injuries from 1990 to 2008. Construction errors contributed to 80% of the structural collapses while the remaining 20% of the incidents are attributed to structural design flaws. (December 2010).