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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Inspection Detail

Accident Investigation Summary
Summary Nr: 202470803 Event: 04/27/2011Employee Is Killed When Head Caught In Elevator Compartment
On April 27, 2011, a homeowner and his wife had just returned to their Carpinteria, CA home, after they had been at their second home in Uruguay. At approximately 4:00 p.m., the homeowner called Employee #1, a 42-year-old gardener/handyman, to come to his house and reconnect the gas line and power to the elevator television center. Employee #1 told the homeowner that he could not go to his house until approximately 7:00 p.m. When Employee #1 arrived, he went under the house through the crawl space entrance. The homeowner waited outside the crawl space, and after several minutes of not hearing from Employee #1, he called his security guard. The security guard went under the house and found Employee #1's head and neck wedged in the elevator compartment. His head and neck had been pinned in the homeowner's elevator television center. The security guard checked for a pulse and found that Employee #1 had been killed. Carpinteria-Summerland Fire Protection District and Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Coroner responded, and the Coroner picked up the body. At approximately 8:42 a.m. on April 28, 2011, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department Coroner's Bureau reported the accident and death. Employee #1 was employed by the homeowner as a gardener/handyman and worked for them on Saturdays. The homeowner paid Employee #1 $15.00 an hour. Employee #1 turned in his hours to the homeowner at the end of the month and received a check. Employee #1 also had a full-time job working on the garden staff for Lotusland and was in charge of their rose garden. In addition, Employee #1 worked for several different homeowners. The investigation concluded that there was no employer/employee relationship, and the Division did not cite the homeowner.
Keywords: head, pinned, neck, crawl space, elevator shaft
Inspection Degree Nature Occupation
1 314824244 Fatality Other Groundskeepers and gardeners, except farm

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