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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 170203871 - Burn - Electrical Fault In Circuit Breaker

Accident: 170203871 -- Report ID: 0950624 -- Event Date: 08/14/1991
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
11192165608/16/19914911International Turbine Research
A SITE FOREMAN WAS REPLACING A 480-VOLT CIRCUIT BREAKER SERVING A WIND TURBINE. HE TURNED A ROTARY SWITCH TO WHAT HE THOUGHT WAS THE OPEN POSITION IN ORDER TO ISOLATE THE CIRCUIT BREAKER. HOWEVER, THE EMPLOYEE DID NOT TEST THE CIRCUIT TO ENSURE THAT IT WAS DEENERGIZED. THE EMPLOYEE HAD PLACED ROTARY SWITCH IN A CLOSED POSITION, AND THE CIRCUIT BREAKER REMAINED ENERGIZED BY BACKFEED FROM A TRANSFORMER. USING TWO PLASTIC HANDLED SCREWDRIVERS, THE EMPLOYEE SHORTED TWO CONTACTS ON THE BREAKER TO DISCHARGE STATIC VOLTAGE BUILDUP. THIS CAUSED A FAULT, AND THE RESULTANT ELECTRIC ARC CAUSED DEEP FLASH BURNS TO THE EMPLOYEE'S FACE AND ARMS AND IGNITED HIS SHIRT. THE EMPLOYEE WAS HOSPITALIZED IN A BURN UNIT FOR 4 DAYS.
Keywords: burn, clothing, electric arc, electrical, power line worker, lockout, e ptd, circuit breaker, elec utility work, electrical fault
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 111921656 Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Electrical power installers and repairers

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