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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 201129640 - Painter Falls From Scaffold And Fractures Skull And Wrist

Accident: 201129640 -- Report ID: 0950613 -- Event Date: 03/14/2013
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
31577557703/27/20131721Orlando Trujillo Painting Contractor, Inc.
At approximately 9:45 a.m. on March 14, 2013, Employee #1, a painter employed by a painting contractor, was working from a rolling scaffold. He was part of a small crew assigned to paint a commercial space in the basement of a shopping mall. Employee #1 was alone on the scaffold and using a spray gun to paint the ceiling and upper areas of the room. Employee #1 fell from the scaffold platform to the floor, a distance of approximately 7 feet. The San Mateo Fire Department responded to a call for assistance. Employee #1 was transported to Stanford Hospital, where he was admitted and treated for a fractured skull and fractured left wrist. This event was timely reported to Cal/OSHA by the employer and the San Mateo Fire Department. The subsequent investigation determined that Employee #1 was working with Coworker #1 to paint the area. Coworker #2, the crew foreman, was supervising Employee #1 and Coworker #1. Another worker, Coworker #3, only had assisted with the scaffold set-up at the start of the shift. Employee #1 and Coworker #2 stated the scaffold platform was set at 7 feet, and they did not have enough room to install both 4-foot guardrail end-sections and X-bracing for rails because the fluorescent light fixtures were 11 feet above the floor. Both said that all four wheel brakes were applied at the time of the fall. Coworkers #1 and #2 said they did not see Employee #1 actually fall off the scaffold and that Employee #1 was the only worker on the scaffold. Employee #1 said he cannot recall the actual fall but thinks he may have lost his balance. Coworkers #1 and #2 said that no ladders, buckets, or other objects were being used to gain greater working height at the time of the fall. All four employees who had involvement at the site stated that there were no defects or problems with the scaffold. The scaffold was set up and measured during Cal/OSHA's inspection of the site, and the platform was less than 7 feet 6 inches above surface, so guardrails were not required in this configuration, per Section 1646. No precipitating action for the fall was definitively established. Employee #1 may have fallen as he was coming down off the scaffold, or as he lost balance on the platform, or by accidentally stepping past the platform edge. CITATIONS: No accident-related citations were issued as a result of the investigation, as there were no causative violations identified. Citations were issued for the following violations: 1-1 General T8CCR 3395(f)(3): Failure to establish written procedures for Heat Illness Prevention for outdoor workers; and 1-2 Regulatory T8CCR 1509(a) {ref: 3203(b)}: Failure to maintain documentation of employee training.
Keywords: fracture, guardrail, mobile scaffold, construction, skull, fall, fall protection, painter, scaffold, wrist
End Use Proj Type Proj Cost Stories NonBldgHt Fatality
Commercial building Alteration or rehabilitation Under $50,000 2
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation Construction
1 315775577 Hospitalized injury Fracture Painters, construction and maintenance FallDist:
FallHt:7
Cause: Interior painting and decorating
FatCause: Fall from/with scaffold

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