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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 14414411 - Burn - Electrical Fault On Busbar

Accident: 14414411 -- Report ID: 0728900 -- Event Date: 10/14/1986
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
10185466911/03/19867694Colin Electric
TWO EMPLOYEES WERE ASSIGNED TO MEGGER THE GROUND POTENTIAL ON A PUMP MOTOR. THEY WERE WORKING IN AN OUTDOOR CABINET HOUSING THE CONTROLS FOR EQUIPMENT OWNED AND OPERATED BY A CITY WATER DEPARTMENT. ONE OF THE EMPLOYEES WAS AN ELECTRICIAN FOR AN ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR; AND THE OTHER EMPLOYEE, WHO WAS IN CHARGE OF THE OPERATION, WORKED FOR THE WATER UTILITY. THERE WERE TWO SETS OF BUSBAR STUDS IN THE LOCATION IN WHICH THE TWO EMPLOYEES WERE WORKING. THE WATER UTILITY EMPLOYEE ASSURED THE ELECTRICIAN THAT THE TOP SET OF STUDS WAS ENERGIZED AND THAT THE BOTTOM STUDS WERE THE ONES TO BE CHECKED AND WERE DEENERGIZED. BEFORE THE ELECTRICIAN PLACED THE LEADS ON THE BOTTOM STUDS, HE ASKED THE OTHER EMPLOYEE IF HE WAS SURE THAT THEY WERE DEENERGIZED. THE WATER UTILITY EMPLOYEE SAID THAT HE WAS CERTAIN. UNFORTUNATELY, HE WAS WRONG. THE BOTTOM BUSBAR WAS ENERGIZED; AND, WHEN THE ELECTRICIAN CONTACTED THE STUDS WITH THE MEGGER LEADS, THERE WAS AN ELECTRICAL EXPLOSION FROM THE RESULTING FAULT. BOTH EMPLOYEES WERE SET ON FIRE--THE ELECTRICIAN DIED OF HIS INJURIES, AND THE OTHER EMPLOYEE WAS HOSPITALIZED. TWO OTHER WATER UTILITY WORKERS RECEIVED BURNS ON THEIR HANDS AS THEY EXTINGUISHED THE FLAMES ON THE BURNING EMPLOYEES.
Keywords: burn, clothing, electric arc, e gi iv, electrical, busbar, electrical work, lockout, electrical fault, hand
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 101854669 Non Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Occupation not reported
2 101854669 Fatality Burn/Scald(Heat) Electricians
3 101854669 Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Occupation not reported
4 101854669 Non Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Occupation not reported

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