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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 201504529 - One-Story Fall Injures Employee

Accident: 201504529 -- Report ID: 0950614 -- Event Date: 09/16/2003
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
30113777409/25/20031752Tulip Hardwood Floors
On September 16, 2003, Employee #1, a foreman for Tulip Hardwood Floors, and two coworkers were preparing to patch an opening in a hardwood floor left by the removal of the cold air return from an old furnace that was taken out of service. The opening measured 31.5 in. by 30.75 in. It was located in the middle of an open doorway between the living room and dining room on the first floor of the house. The opening was covered from beneath by a 26 in. by 32.5 in. by .0625 in. thick piece of galvanized sheet metal. The panel was attached to the floor joists by eight .5 in. long hexagonal head sheet metal screws. There were four screws located on each of the lengthwise sides. The exterior of the joists contained what appeared to be mold, and they appeared somewhat deteriorated. Employee #1 knelt on the floor on the living room side of the opening and pressed on the sheet metal with his hands. All eight of the screws pulled out of the floor joists, and the panel gave way, causing Employee #1 to fall 58 in. to the dirt floor of the basement, where he struck his head. The fall caused bilateral epidural hematomas and multiple skull fractures, and Employee #1 was hospitalized for treatment.
Keywords: fracture, floor hole, construction, skull, fall
End Use Proj Type Proj Cost Stories NonBldgHt Fatality
Single family or duplex dwelling Maintenance or repair $250,000 to $500,000 3
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation Construction
1 301137774 Hospitalized injury Fracture Supervisors; carpenters and related workers FallDist:
FallHt:5
Cause: Interior carpentry
FatCause: Fall through opening (other than roof)

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