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Accident Report Detail

Accident: 200630796 - Employee Electrocuted While Installing Electric Sign

Accident: 200630796 -- Report ID: 0316400 -- Event Date: 08/16/2002
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
30046846908/17/20021799Ritchey Advertising, Inc.
On August 16, 2002, Ritchey Advertising, Inc., was completing the final stage of erecting and installing a flag mount type sign at a car dealership in Martinsville, WV. The 10 ft by 15 ft sign was errected on a 34 ft tall pole and was illuminated by 10 ft long fluorescent lights, mounted horizontally within the sign. The job began on July 31, 2002, when concrete and anchor bolts were installed to prepare the foundation. On August 15, 2002, the sign was delivered to the site and installed. The company was aware that some of the lamps had broken during shipment and would need to be replaced. Employee #1 and coworkers, of Ritchey Advertising, were contracted to install the wiring and for the final hook up. On August 16, 2002, the lamps were taken to the job site for installation and work began at approximately 2:30 p.m., after the employees completed another job in the area. They were using a Ford F-Series diesel truck, VIN #1FDNF80CXSVA64335, equipped with a telescoping boom. Employee #1 was raised to the sign to install the new lamps. He had placed three new lamps with the power off to the sign. Once the lamps were installed, Employee #1 asked a coworker to turn on the power to see if the lamps were operating. Mounted on the bed of the truck was a Miller AEAD-200LE constant current AC/DC arc welding generator rated at 5,000 watts. An orange, three-wire extension cord was plugged into the generator; power was provided to the sign by inserting its permanent hot and neutral wires into the female end of the extension cord. When plugged in, the upper half of the sign did not light. Employee #1 was reaching through a 5 in. diameter access hole in the side of the sign as he was telling the coworker to turn it off. Power was stopped just as Employee #1 slumped down into the bucket. A coworker ran into the dealership and told someone to call 911 while another coworker lowered the bucket to the ground. The Wetzel County Emergency Services responded and transported Employee #1 to the Wetzel County Hospital in New Martinsville, where he died at approximately 4:39 p.m. that same afternoon. The sign had still been energized when Employee #1 reached in, and a short in the wiring caused him to be electrocuted.
Keywords: lighting circuit, work rules, electrocuted, struck against, construction, elec circ part--misc, electrical fault, advertising sign, blind reaching
End Use Proj Type Proj Cost Stories NonBldgHt Fatality
Other building New project or new addition Under $50,000 34 X
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation Construction
1 300468469 Fatality Electric Shock Construction laborers FallDist:
Cause: Fencing, installing lights, signs, etc.
FatCause: Electrocution from equipment installation/tool use

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