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Welder electrocuted by contact with an energized overhead crane conductor in South Carolina, July 9, 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 88-32, 1988 Nov; :1-6
The case of a 41 year old male welder who died when he came in contact with an energized overhead crane contact conductor was examined. The employer was a multistate corporation specializing in steel fabrication. A comprehensive written safety program was in place and safety training programs were provided. The victim had served as a welder for this firm for over 16 years. The accident occurred when the victim, climbing down from a work station, paused to rest due to excessive heat. He was sitting on a crossbrace between two cranes. His task had been to add reinforcing steel to the bridge of the larger of the two overhead cranes. He apparently moved around and the back of his neck came in contact with one of the smaller crane's contact conductors. His supervisor disconnected the power to the small crane contact conductors and summoned help. If the work site had been properly examined for hazards, it would have been apparent that the conductors of the smaller crane should also have been deenergized as the conductors had been for the crane on which the work was being done. Existing safety features were in place at the time of the accident, but the workers failed to move the crane to the isolated and permanently installed ladder which should have been used for their task. Runway conductors should be guarded in such a manner that persons cannot inadvertently touch energized current carrying parts; the conductors on the crane were not covered.
NIOSH-Author; FACE-88-32; Region-4; Accident-analysis; Safety-research; Accident-prevention; Work-practices; Electrical-shock; Electrical-workers; Welders; Welding-industry; Construction-Search
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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