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Painter dies when scaffold falls inside municipal water tank in Indiana, October 21, 1989.
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 90-12, 1990 Jun; :1-6
The case of a 37 year old male journeyman painter who was killed when the swing scaffold on which he was working fell was investigated. The victim was using the scaffold to access the interior of a 68 foot tall, 32 foot diameter municipal water tank. He had been working from a single point suspension scaffold near the top of the tank. An aluminum ladder secured to a steel stirrup at each end formed the scaffold. He was wearing a safety belt and lanyard secured to a lifeline. He disconnected the lanyard from the lifeline and moved to the other end of the scaffold to hand the spray paint gun he was using to his foreman who was on an exterior ladder at a manhole. The foreman heard a pop and saw the scaffold and the worker fall 65 feet. The cause of death was hemorrhage from liver laceration and brain stem hematoma. Inspection revealed that the two U-bolts on the cable which supported the block and tackle and from which the scaffold was suspended had loosened enough to allow the cable to slip through them. It was recommended that appropriate personal protective equipment be worn at all times whenever the potential for a serious fall exists; and that suspension scaffold rigging be inspected periodically to ensure that all connections are tight and no damage to the rigging has occurred since its last use.
NIOSH-Author; Region-5; FACE-90-12; Accident-analysis; Safety-practices; Safety-equipment; Traumatic-injuries; Painters; Spray-painting; 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