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Iron worker dies following an 89-foot fall through an opening in temporary metal flooring in Virginia, July 12, 1991.
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 91-33, 1992 Feb; :1-6
The case of a 26 year old male iron worker who died from injuries sustained after falling through an unguarded temporary floor opening to the ground 89 feet below was investigated. The employer was a steel erection company subcontracted to install the main structural steel elements of a paper processing facility. The company employed 55 persons. There was a corporate safety officer, a written safety program, and written safety procedures. The victim was one of six iron workers bolting up the structural steel at the time of the incident. About an hour before he fell, some of the temporary metal flooring had been removed from the fourth floor because most of the work had been completed at that height. The victim left the roof deck to get a drink from the water cooler on the fourth floor. Coworkers told him that he had missed a few bolts on the fourth floor and he began walking along the floor looking upward for the missed bolts. He was not tied off. He was not aware some of the flooring was missing and he fell through a hole (5 feet wide and 28 feet long) to the ground. The cause of death was massive injuries to the head, neck and chest. It was recommended that workers do not leave a workplace until all floor openings have been safely secured by barriers with warning signs or safety railings; that all workers continually adhere to established safe work practices; and that all workers actively participate in workplace safety.
NIOSH-Author; Region-3; FACE-91-33; Accident-analysis; Work-practices; Traumatic-injuries; Construction-industry; Personal-protective-equipment; 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