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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Inspection Detail

Inspection: 305347098 - Southern Contracting Company

Inspection Information - Office: Ca Santa Ana District Office

Nr: 305347098Report ID: 0950631Open Date: 08/06/2002

Southern Contracting Company
22212 Brookhurst St
Huntington Beach, CA 92649
Union Status: Union
SIC: 1731/Electrical Work
Mailing: 559 N Twin Oaks Valley Rd, San Marcos, CA 92069

Inspection Type:Accident
Scope:Partial Advanced Notice:N
Safety/Health:Safety Close Conference:02/04/2003
Emphasis: S:Construction (Cship)Close Case:03/28/2005

Related Activity:TypeIDSafetyHealth

Violation Summary
Serious Willful Repeat Other Unclass Total
Initial Violations 1 1
Current Violations
Initial Penalty $18,000 $0 $0 $0 $0 $18,000
Current Penalty $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
FTA Amount $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0

Violation Items
# ID Type Standard Issuance Abate Curr$ Init$ Fta$ Contest LastEvent
Deleted 1. 01001 Serious 29400001 A 02/04/2003 02/09/2003 $0 $18,000 $0 02/13/2003 F - Formal Settlement

Accident Investigation Summary
Summary Nr: 201142569Event: 08/06/2002One Killed, Four Injured In Electrical Explosion
At 7:40 a.m. on August 6, 2002, Employees #1 through #4, all subcontract electrians, were preparing to remove and replace a 12-kilovolt electrical bus at a public sanitation waste water treatment facility. Employee #1, a journeyman electrician and also the foreman, opened the circuit leading to the bus being removed, and locked out that system with two locks. He then instructed Employee #2 to open the back of the equipment so that they could get at the bus. Employees #1 through #3 together opened the compartment, after which Employees #2 and #3 left the area to get additional equipment. Upon their return, they observed that Employee #1 had already attached one end of a grounding strap to the cabinet. When the other end of the grounding strap contacted the 12-kilovolt circuit, there was an electrical explosion and fire ball. Seconds later, as the public electrical utility system tried to come back on line, a second explosion and fire ball occurred. Employee #1 was directly in front of both explosions and suffered third-degree burns over 90 percent of his body; he was transported to the hospital, where he died 23 days later. Employees #2 and #3, who had been watching the attachment of the grounding strap, were hospitalized with second- and third-degree burns to their faces and arms. Employee #4 and Employee #5, the safety inspector for the general contractor, were also observing the process and received minor singeing and contusions, for which they were treated and released that same day. Subsequent investigation revealed that Employee #1 apparently told Employee #2 the wrong compartment number to open so they were actually working on energized lines. Employee #1 had available a SB Touch Tester, serial #10493, which Employees #1 and #3 had checked was operating before entering the building. Employee #4 stated Employee #1 had not used it before attaching the grounding strap. After the accident, the tester was checked at a lab and found to be functioning properly.
Keywords: burn, work rules, fire, construction, lockout, test equipment, elec circ part--misc, electrical cabinet, electrical fault, inattention
Inspection Degree Nature Occupation
1 305347098 Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Electricians
2 305347098 Non Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Construction inspectors
3 305347098 Non Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Electricians' apprentices
4 305347098 Hospitalized injury Burn/Scald(Heat) Electricians
5 305347098 Fatality Burn/Scald(Heat) Supervisors; electricians & power transm. install.

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