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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 202602140 - Employee Attending To Fire Is Killed By Falling Limb

Accident: 202602140 -- Report ID: 0551702 -- Event Date: 06/22/2012
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
31632031606/26/20129199Village Of Central City - Public Works Dept.

On June 22, 2012, an employee was working as the director of the Village of Central City Department of Public Works in Central City, IL. He was called to the area of the village lagoon, where a large dead tree was on fire. The fire department from nearby Centralia, IL, was on the scene, but access was limited. A tree removal service had been summoned, but it had not yet arrived. In the meantime, the fire crew and the employee were monitoring the situation. They were attempting to keep the fire from spreading onto the vegetation beneath the tree. The employee crossed a fence and was stomping out a charred vegetation area approximately 30 feet (9.1 meters) from the base of the tree. Without warning, a large limb fell from the tree directly onto his head. He was killed. This tree was approximately 150 feet (45.7 meters) southwest of an area that had been dug out for use as a burn pit by the Village. The burn pit was the suspected source of ignition for the tree. There had been no new fire in the burn pit that day, and village employees were instructed to make certain that all controlled burn fires were extinguished before leaving the site. It was possible, but not certain, that there was an unnoticed hot spot and that an ember had been blown into the tree. Wind gusts were present on the day of the fire, and foliage was extremely dry from recent hot dry weather.

Keywords: firefighter, head, tree limb, fire, tree, struck by, falling object, water

Employee Details
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 316320316 Fatality Other Occupation not reported

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