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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 785071 - Employee Paralyzed In Fall From Scaffold

Accident: 785071 -- Report ID: 1054112 -- Event Date: 06/12/1989
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
10517899006/12/19891721Martin Construction Co Of Oregon Inc
Employee #1 and a coworker were sandblasting the inside of a 1 1/2 million gallon capacity water tank from a two point suspended scaffold. It appears that the scaffold did not have adequate planking and guardrails, and most importantly, no independent safety lines were installed. While the employees secured the scaffold, one of the wooden 2 by 4 guardrails broke, causing the scaffold to move. Employee #1, who was not secured by the required independent safety line, fell approximately 30 ft from the scaffold to the tank floor. He suffered a fracture to his spinal cord and is currently in the hospital paralyzed from the chest down. The following factors contributed to the accident: inadequate scaffold; lack of an independent safety line, which could have prevented the fall; inadequate confined space entry procedures for a potentially toxic flammable combustible atmosphere; lack of adequate breathing air to sandblast hoods; and inadequate supervision of employees by management.
Keywords: paralysis, guardrail, confined space, spine, work rules, construction, two pt susp scaffold, fall, fall protection, sandblasting
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 105178990 Hospitalized injury Fracture Painters, construction and maintenance

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