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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 143837.015 - Employee Fractures Vertebrae In Fall From Tree To Ground

Accident: 143837.015 -- Report ID: 0317700 -- Event Date: 02/15/2022
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
1578875.01502/17/2022Penn Line Corporation

At 3:30 p.m. on February 15, 2022, Employee #1 and two coworkers were performing utility line clearance tree trimming work along a 7.2 kilovolt distribution lin e. Employee #1 had climbed a cherry tree approximately 35 ft high by 7 in diamet er at the base. One lanyard of his personal fall arrest system (PFAS) had a tie- in location approximately 29 ft from the ground. As he descended the tree, Emplo yee #1 removed the second lanyard of his PFAS so he could reattach it and contin ue his descent. Before he could reattach the second lanyard, his climbing line p osition and the outward lean of the tree caused his body to move away from the m ain stem of the tree. When his weight shifted, the limb (serving as a tie-in loc ation for the first lanyard) broke about 6 ft below the tie-in point, causing th e employee to fall approximately 13 feet to the ground. When his coworkers heard a noise and a yell, they responded and called 911. Employee #1 was hospitalized to treat compression fractures to L1 & L2 vertebrae.

Keywords: fall, fall from elevation, fall protection, fracture, spine, tree care, tree failure, tree limb, tree pruner, vertebra

Employee Details
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 1578875.015 31 M Hospitalized injury Construction laborers

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