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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 170360788 - Employee Injured When Rocket Launcher Shell Explodes

Accident: 170360788 -- Report ID: 0950623 -- Event Date: 08/14/1996
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
11196874910/17/19969631Glenn Co. Mosquito And Vector Control Dist.
At 2:15 p.m. on August 14, 1996, Employee #1 was at some wastewater ponds where mosquito fish were being raised by his employer. He was using a 37 mm Super Bird Banger hand-held rocket launcher to frighten away birds and predators in areas 100 to 200 yd away. The launcher had a short barrel that held the projectile and a plunger-type firing device that screwed onto the barrel. When a shell exploded in the barrel, the small spring-loaded plunger recoiled back into Employee #1's hand. He sustained eight fractured bones in his wrist, a fractured index finger and radius bone, a severed artery in his right wrist, and a large laceration on his right palm. It was not known why the shell exploded prematurely. Employee #1 and his supervisor both stated that the barrel of the device was clear of any obstruction. At the time of the accident Employee #1 was working for a special district commission engaged in mosquito abatement.
Keywords: severed, fracture, explosion, laceration, struck by, artery, flying object, hand, mech malfunction, wrist
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 111968749 Hospitalized injury Fracture Health technologists and technicians, n.e.c.

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