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Two painters electrocuted in Ohio, November 17, 1986.
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, FACE 87-28, 1987 Mar; :1-5
While using a 36 foot aluminum extension ladder to paint a 20 foot, inverted L-shaped, metal light pole, two painters were electrocuted. One painter was on the ladder with the other steadying the ladder from the ground. They were using an airless spray gun. A 12,460 volt power line was located 12 inches above the horizontal crossarm of the light pole and 20 inches outside the vertical support. The ladder was standing on uneven ground and wooden blocks were placed under one leg to provide an even surface. The ladder slipped away from the pole, and the painter on the ladder contacted the power line. The top rung of the ladder was damaged; either the uneven surface or the damaged rung may have played a part in the slipping of the ladder on the metal light pole. The firm for which these two men worked was very small and had no written safety policy or program. It was recommended that ladders for use near energized power lines be made of nonconductive materials, that ladders be properly maintained, that ladders be placed on level ground and adequately supported to prevent movement, that a safe working distance be maintained between power lines and equipment or structures that need periodic maintenance or access, and that all personnel be trained to recognize safety hazards associated with their tasks.
NIOSH-Author; Region-5; FACE-87-28; Electrical-hazards; Electrical-shock; Safety-practices; Maintenance-workers; Accident-analysis; Construction-Search
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
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National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division