In May 2002, a 61-year-old truck driver working for a farm supply cooperative was killed when he became entangled in an auxiliary power take-off (PTO) shaft of a truck tractor. This PTO shaft transferred power from the tractor engine to fuel pumps on the tanker trailer. The PTO shaft was mounted on the outside of the tractor frame on the passenger side. The victim was working alone in the morning unloading a tanker trailer load of diesel fuel he had picked up the night before. After successfully unloading the fuel into a bulk tank nearby, he entered the area near the PTO shaft, between the cab and the rear wheels of the tractor. The unguarded, rotating PTO shaft caught his loose-fitting jacket, and he was instantly entangled, and died at the scene from a broken neck. A coworker arrived at approximately 9:00 a.m. to the work site, saw the truck running, and noticed the victim caught in the PTO shaft, which had broken during the entanglement. The shield for the PTO was missing, and employees and supervisors were unable to locate it, and had no information why, or when, the shield had been removed. Recommendations based on our investigation are as follows: 1. Employers and workers should ensure that PTO drivelines and other exposed drive-train components are shielded from contact with workers. 2. Employers should ensure that workers are trained to recognize the hazards of working near PTO drivelines and other hazardous machine parts.
Region-7; Accident-analysis; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Traumatic-injuries; Work-operations; Work-analysis; Work-areas; Work-performance; Work-practices; Safety-education; Safety-equipment; Safety-measures; Safety-monitoring; Protective-measures; Equipment-design; Equipment-operators; Equipment-reliability; Training; Personal-protective-equipment; Protective-equipment; Clothing