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Lineman electrocuted in Maryland, January 16, 1987.
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 87-35, 1987 Apr; :1-5
A journeyman lineman with 31 years experience was electrocuted when he contacted a 34.5 kilovolt power source during replacement of a switch jumper. The victim was employed by an integrated electrical contracting company. Bad connections detected at a local chemical facility were to be repaired or replaced by the contractor. Two urgent areas were identified which involved the switch jumper wires for three parallel power lines on two of the substations at the facility. The parallel lines were 33 inches apart and there were three switch jumper wires at each substation. After working on the first substation, the victim and an apprentice lineman raised themselves in a two man aerial bucket to work on the second substation. The disconnect switches located on the substation were opened. Before beginning work the victim was told to ground the lines and test them. Witnesses indicated that the victim refused to use the tester or ground the lines as he had to leave work early that day and was in a hurry. The victim pulled himself from the bucket onto the substation structure and began to clean the switch with a wire brush when a flash occurred. The victim died 4 hours later. Recommendations arising from this accident included the ruling that employees must follow safe work procedures, that employers should assure adherence to established safe work practices, and that employers should develop and implement comprehensive safety rules and training.
NIOSH-Author; Region-3; FACE-87-35; Electrical-hazards; Electrical-shock; Electric-power-transmission-lines; Safety-practices; Accident-analysis
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division