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Electrical contractor crew leader electrocuted in South Carolina, September 1, 1988.

NIOSH 1988 Nov; :1-7
The case of a male crew leader who was electrocuted while connecting a newly installed, concrete pad mounted transformer for a new residence was examined. The victim was employed by an electrical contractor who had a written safety policy, a comprehensive safety and training program, and a full time safety officer. The victim and two crew members were to splice a pad mounted transformer into an existing underground 7200 volt primary cable. The primary line was deenergized at an adjacent transformer, but when the line was cut, an arc occurred. The victim drove to the main switch cabinet, removed a blown fuse and its holder, and had the primary wire tested. He then returned the adjacent transformer to service and began to work on the primary. After about 1 1/2 minutes, the victim groaned and fell onto a crew member, who received a shock. The victim was apparently unaware of the existence of a back up generator. He was therefore not aware that current could feed back through the transformer on which he was working to the primary line even though he had removed the fuse and fuse holder from the main switch cabinet. If the automatic transfer switch was operated manually at some time after the battery powered generator was activated, current would appear in the primary wire. It is stressed that before any work on an electrical system, it is important that each person knows and understands the functioning of each component of that system. This is particularly important in cases where the system being worked on is underground and the direction of the current flow cannot be traced.
NIOSH-Author; FACE-88-45; Region-4; Accident-analysis; Safety-research; Electric-power-transmission-lines; Electrical-shock; Work-practices; Electrical-systems; Construction-Search
Publication Date
Document Type
Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation; Field Studies
Fiscal Year
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Identifying No.
NIOSH Division
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Division of Safety Research, NIOSH, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Morgantown, West Virginia, Report No. FACE-88-45, 7 pages