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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 201796141 - Employee Burned When Meter Tester Explodes

Accident: 201796141 -- Report ID: 0950644 -- Event Date: 08/29/2002
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
12609103209/06/20021731Basic Electric
At approximately 10:00 a.m. on August 29, 2002, Employee #1 and a coworker were at a set of electrical distribution panels located in the back of a store. Employee #1 was at the load distribution center, pulling sub-feed wires from the distribution panel to the unit disconnects while he coworker was inside the store. Employee #1 was going to test the load side of the breakers to make sure they were de-energized but first had to check his meter, an Ideal wiggins tester, which was capable of measuring up to 600 volts. He tested his wiggins by placing one lead on the ground bar and the other lead on the 277-volt line side. As he did this, the meter exploded. He suffered flash burns on his hands, arms, and face. Coworkers helped him to the front of the store, where they poured water on him. Employee #1 was transported to UC-Irvine Hospital, where he was treated for six days for third-degree burns on his right thumb and the back of his left hand; second-degree burns on the fingers of both hands; first-degree burns on his face; and foreign matter in his left eye. The meximum voltage of the panel was 480 volts, below the capacity of the meter reader.
Keywords: burn, construction, electrical work, test equipment, explosion, elec circ part--misc, electrical cabinet, electrical fault, face, hand
End Use Proj Type Proj Cost Stories NonBldgHt Fatality
Commercial building New project or new addition $250,000 to $500,000 1 30
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 126091032 Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Electricians

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