Tree trimming groundsman electrocuted after grasping a guy wire that contacted an energized guy wire in Virginia, May 7, 1990.
NIOSH 1990 Dec; :1-6
A 20 year old male tree trimming groundsman was electrocuted when he grabbed a guy wire causing it to contact an energized conductor on a utility pole. The employer was a tree service company which had a contract to keep an electric utility right of way clear of brush and trees. On the day of the incident, a five man crew was clearing brush and trees. The victim had completed cutting brush and trees from around the guy wire which was secured to a utility pole at one end and to a steel rod anchored in the ground at the other end. He laid the chain saw he was using on the ground. He grasped the butt of a fallen tree with one hand, and the guy wire with the other hand. When he grasped the guy wire, it swayed, due to approximately 8 inches of slack in the wire, and contacted an uninsulated jumper wire which connected a 1 amp fuse to a 14,400 volt powerline. It is recommended that a jobsite survey be conducted before starting any job to identify potential hazards and implement appropriate controls; that existing safety programs be reviewed and revised to include measures that enable workers to recognize and control hazards; and that utility companies avoid placing transformers and jumper wires on utility poles in close proximity to unguarded, uninsulated guy wires.
NIOSH-Author; Region-5; FACE-90-34; Accident-analysis; Electrical-hazards; Occupational-accidents; Electric-power-transmission-lines
Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation; Field Studies
NTIS Accession No.
Division of Safety Research, NIOSH, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Morgantown, West Virginia, Report Number FACE-90-34, 6 pages