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Fourteen-year-old rental equipment worker dies from asphyxiation after becoming entangled in an electric chain hoist - Colorado.

Werntz-C; Casini-V; Mardis-A
NIOSH 2002 May; :1-5
On July 21, 2001, a 14-year-old youth (the victim) working at a rental equipment company was fatally injured after becoming entangled in an electric chain hoist. The youth was employed to assist customers with loading and unloading rental equipment from customer vehicles and to prepare rental equipment for use by the next customer. After using the electric hoist to remove a vibratory plate tamper from a customerís truck, he was seen operating the chain hoist without a load. Several minutes later, when he had not returned to the office, his coworkers found him suspended by the chain around his neck. He was removed from the chain by his coworkers, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) was initiated, and emergency medical services were called. He was transported by ambulance to the hospital in critical condition and died 6 days later. NIOSH investigators concluded that, to help prevent similar incidents, employers should: 1) ensure that adequate adult supervision is provided for youth workers. Training for all adult workers should emphasize their responsibility to monitor, and intervene when necessary, if unsafe activities are being performed by youth coworkers; 2) implement training programs targeted at youth workers which emphasize the link between unsafe behavior and the potential for injury; 3) review the tasks to which youths are assigned and ensure that the assigned tasks are as inherently safe as possible, given the relative inexperience of youth workers; 4) place return chain containers on all chain hoists to decrease the risk of becoming entangled in the return chain. Additionally, the Department of Labor should; 5) consider amending child labor regulations to remove the exemption for less than one ton capacity when using an electric or air-operated hoist.
Region-8; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Age-factors; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Safety-education; Safety-measures; Safety-monitoring; Safety-practices; Safety-programs; Traumatic-injuries
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Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
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National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health