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Two pipefitters electrocuted in North Carolina, March 26, 1988.
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 88-22, 1988 Sep; :1-6
The case of a 51 year old male pipefitter/welder and a 36 year old male pipe welder who died when a crane they were using to move a metal building contacted an energized overhead power line was examined. The men were employed by a plumbing/pipefitting contractor with 32 employees. A five man crew was working at a large chemical corporation facility. The crew was using a rented 58 foot, 7.5 ton crane to move various tanks and other equipment. The crane was operated by a pipefitter with no formal training in crane operation. The victims had worked for the employer for 4 days. A metal frame welding shed was to be lifted from the ground and then rotated manually before replacing it on the ground. As the crane lifted the building, four men were stationed at the corners to turn the building. The crane contacted the power lines, electrocuting the two victims who were wearing neoprene soled work boots and were standing in the grass. One of the victims wore cloth work gloves and the other had unprotected hands. The workers who survived the incident were wearing thick rubber soled shoes, leather gloves, and standing on asphalt. It was recommended that overhead power lines should be deenergized by the electric utility before attempting work in their proximity. Only trained operators should operate powered equipment, and cranes should not be operated in the vicinity of power lines.
NIOSH-Author; FACE-88-22; Region-4; Accident-analysis; Electrical-hazards; Work-practices; Safety-research; Welders; Electric-power-transmission-lines; Construction-workers; Construction-Search
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