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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 904847 - Employee Killed By Loader

Accident: 904847 -- Report ID: 0551800 -- Event Date: 11/01/1991
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
11496213711/01/19912434Koetter And Smith Inc
At approximately 7:10 a.m. on November 1, 1991, Employee #1, an 18-year-old recent high school graduate with three months employment at Koetter & Smith, Inc., decided that he needed to turn on three large high density spotlights to light up a dark and dank warehouse. It was a rainy, dreary morning. He backed a Case 1845 hydraulic front end bucket Uni-Loader into position, adjoining two weather-capped light toggle switches mounted on the south wall of a 160 ft by 145 ft warehouse. He was preparing to unload two semi-trailers full of wood scrap at the far north end of the warehouse. The bucket was raised to full height as he reached through the opening on the left side of the cab to try to turn the lights on without getting out of the loader. He apparently could not reach the light switches and as he began to pull himself back into the cab, his belt or coat caught the left hydraulic bucket control lever that raises and lowers the bucket and moved the lever to the right with his body motion. When the bucket lowered, the hydraulic cylinder on the left side of the unit hit the employee's lower back and squeezed his torso against the sharp edges of the cab. The employee somehow extricated himself and crawled about 60 ft north. He was overheard groaning on his radio and other employees responded. He was found kneeling on the floor and mumbling "I knew better. I was just trying to turn on the lights, am I dying?" He died by 7:25 a.m. of severe lacerations to his liver with massive internal bleeding.
Keywords: clothing, front end loader, warehouse, hemorrhage, control lever, caught by, liver, caught between, crushed, laceration
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 114962137 Fatality Cut/Laceration Excavating and loading machine operators

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