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28 year-old electronic technician dies from electrical burns in Georgia, August 18, 1986.

Authors
NIOSH
Source
NIOSH 1987 Mar; :1-5
NIOSHTIC No.
00174311
Abstract
A flashover explosion occurred in a 20 kilovolt switch compartment which caused the death of a 28 year old electronic technician on August 18, 1986. The employer was a large municipal transportation company with an extensive safety program. Preventive maintenance was being carried out on the alternating current switch gear in a rail car maintenance shop. The upper compartment of the primary switch contained three knife switches which disengage the incoming power. After opening the three switches in the upper compartment, which deenergized the lower compartment, the victim started to clean the upper compartment area by spraying cleaning fluid from an aerosol spray can onto the circuitry. The aerosol provided a conductive plasma for the electric current which passed through the spray and the victim's right hand, across his chest, and exited his left upper arm which was in contact with the center switch blade. The current exceeded 3,000 amperes of phase current and 1,200 amperes of neutral current. The victim died 24 hours later due to electrical burns. Recommendations include performing maintenance on energized equipment only with adequate personal protective equipment and devices, securing the compartment door to the primary disconnect for the power company feeder lines, preparation of a check list to verify deenergization prior to maintenance, outlawing the use of aerosol spray cans in any high voltage rooms, and reemphasizing company safety rules for workers performing hazardous jobs.
Keywords
NIOSH-Author; Region-4; FACE-87-31; Electrical-systems; Electrical-workers; Electrical-shock; Safety-practices; Maintenance-workers; Accident-analysis
Publication Date
19870324
Document Type
Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation; Field Studies
Fiscal Year
1987
NTIS Accession No.
PB88-149463
NTIS Price
A01
Identifying No.
FACE-87-31
NIOSH Division
DSR
SIC Code
NAICS-48
Source Name
Division of Safety Research, NIOSH, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Morgantown, West Virginia, Report No. FACE-87-31, 5 pages
State
GA; WV
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