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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 14352363 - Employee Killed In Fall From Fixed Ladder

Accident: 14352363 -- Report ID: 0418600 -- Event Date: 05/31/1984
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
121778506/05/19841629Red Mountain Construction Co Inc
Employee #1 was a member of a pile driving crew. The crew had placed a hollow steel pile into the lead. The initial blow of the continuous ram diesel pile-driving hammer drove the pile 2 to 3 feet into the ground. This caused the wire rope cable (whip-line) to peel rapidly off the crane drum and wrap around the outside of the drum. The whip-line, also referred to as the power line, is choked around the piling and is used to hoist the pile into the lead and to steady the pile while it is being driven. As the crew tried to free the cable, they continued to hammer the piling, assuming that the whip-line cable would unravel if the piling were forced lower into the ground. Instead, this action placed tension on the crane boom, pulling it down toward the lead. When the job foreman realized this, he attempted unsuccessfully to hammer at the whip-line and knock it up the piling. When all methods failed to unravel the line, the foreman instructed Employee #1 to climb on top of a shed adjacent to the lead and to cut/burn the shackle on the whip-line. Employee #1 climbed the lead ladder, was handed the cutting torch, and began to cut/burn the whip-line itself, which was not what he had been instructed to do. As the whip-line was severed, the crane boom, which was under tension toward the lead (ground), suddenly sprang upward with great force and lifted the lead approximately 1 1/2 to 2 feet off the ground. This threw Employee #1 off the lead ladder, into the side of the adjacent shed, and onto the ground. He was killed instantly. The job superintendent stated that it was unusual for the pile to have been driven so far into the ground because other piles had sunk no more than 12 to 18 inches on the initial blow.
Keywords: ejected, pile leads, pile driver, crane boom, work rules, struck against, construction, fall, entangled, cutting and burning
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 1217785 Fatality Other Occupation not reported

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