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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 202455226 - Employee Fractures Back In Fall From Ladder

Accident: 202455226 -- Report ID: 0950642 -- Event Date: 11/17/2008
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
31049374711/25/20087699Carrier Corporation
At approximately 10:30 a.m. on November 17, 2008, Employee #1 was working as a service technician for the Carrier Corporation. He had been working at the same position for approximately 5 to 6 years with Carrier and approximately 8 years with a prior employer in the same field of work. Working alone, he was servicing a commercial-type air conditioning system at an auto parts store in Maywood, California. The major HVAC components were on the roof of the store, and to access them, Employee #1 had to climb a 20-foot fixed ladder that was located inside the storage room at the rear of the store. The 20-foot fixed ladder had, at some point in the past, been cut into two sections and turned into an offset fixed ladder. It had been cut above the rung at the 12-foot level, and the bottom portion had been shifted over to the right approximately 18 inches. Once on the ladder, Employee #1 would have to unlock an access hatch to get onto the roof. Employee #1 got the key, climbed up the offset fixed ladder and through the access hatch, and made his inspection of the HVAC unit. He needed to go back to his service truck for a fan belt. As he was descending the top portion of the offset fixed ladder, either he lost his hand grip on the ladder or his foot slipped off a rung. In any event, he fell approximately 12 feet through the framework of the suspended-tile ceiling to the concrete floor below. He sustained a fracture to his back. Emergency medical services were called, and Employee #1 was transported to St Francis Hospital. He remained in the hospital for approximately three days. The accident was not reported on a timely basis, as required by California Code of Regulations Section 342(a), and the offset fixed ladder did not have a landing platform, as required in Section 3277 (j)(1) of the Cal/OSHA code. A regulatory citation for violating California Code of Regulations, Section 342(a), and a general citation for violating Section 3277(j)(1) were proposed.
Keywords: platform, fracture, maintenance, roof, inadequate maint, air conditioner, hatch, ladder, fixed ladder, fall
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 310493747 Hospitalized injury Fracture Mechanical engineering technicians

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