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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident Summary Nr: 200340800 - Employee Is Injured By Excavator Arm

Accident Summary Nr: 200340800 -- Report ID: 0523900 -- Event Date: 08/02/2008
Inspection NrDate OpenedSICNAICSEstablishment Name
30704563308/06/20081794238910Superior Excavation

Abstract: At approximately 8:40 a.m. on August 2, 2008, Employee #1 was operating a New Holland Wheeled Excavator (Model Number EW 160), when he noticed that the motor compartment door was open. With the excavator's arm in a fully raised position, Employee #1 attempted to exit the cab through an opening created by a missing window. He attempted to jump onto the chassis to close the motor equipment door. When jumping out of the cab, Employee #1's left foot or ankle struck the joystick that controls the arm, knocking the joystick from its base and bringing the arm down. As a result, he was caught between the front corner of the cab and the excavator's arm. Employee #1 lost consciousness, fractured his arm in numerous locations, fractured all his ribs, and sustained two collapsed lungs. The owners of the two other companies on site, who both served for the town's volunteer fire department, saw the incident. One owner summoned emergency medical services, and the other, who had been an operator in the past, freed Employee #1 and held on to him to keep him from falling. Someone, presumably one or both owners, placed Employee #1 in the seat of the cab, where he briefly regained consciousness. Within a short time, the police and ambulance arrived. A police officer and the two business owners helped Employee #1 exit the cab. Employee #1 was placed on a gurney and into the ambulance. He was then flown to St. Mary's Medical Center in Duluth, MN, where he was admitted to the neural intensive care unit. Employee #1 stayed in the hospital for 22 days. It was determined that Employee #1 would be unable to work for at least six months and would possibly never be able to work again.

Keywords: fracture, lung, unconsciousness, pinned, construction, caught between, rib, excavator, arm
Accident Details
End Use Project Type Project Cost Stories Non-building Height Fatality
Commercial building New project or new addition $50,000 to $250,000 1 7

Employee Details
Employee # Inspection Nr Age Sex Degree Nature of Injury Occupation Construction
1 307045633 Hospitalized injury Fracture Excavating and loading machine operators Distance of Fall: feet
Worker Height Above Ground/Floor: feet
Cause: Excavation
Fatality Cause: Crushed/run-over/trapped of operator by operating

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