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Roofer helper dies following a 22-foot fall through a roof opening in Virginia, October 2, 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 92-03, 1992 Mar; :1-6
The case of a 21 year old roofer helper who died following a fall through of 22 feet through a roof opening was investigated. The employer was a roofing and sheet metal contractor which employed 80 workers, including 20 roofer helpers. The employer had a written safety policy, a comprehensive written safety program, and a full time designated safety officer. The contractor had been subcontracted to provide and install roofing materials on an addition to the gymnasium at a middle school. On the day of the accident five workers were placing insulating strips over the panels on the roof deck. The victim, after completing a task, approached the foreman and asked what was to be done at the plywood area. The foreman instructed him to wait because there was a hole in that area. The victim walked toward the plywood as the foreman continued his own task. The victim either intentionally removed the plywood from the opening, lost his balance and fell, or unintentionally displaced the plywood and tripped into the opening. He died about 17 hours later of a fractured skull and cerebral edema. It was recommended that the floor opening be guarded by a standard railing and toe boards or cover capable of supporting the load; and that a verbal and/or written examination be made to reinforce and evaluate the effectiveness of the safety training program.
NIOSH-Author; Region-3; FACE-92-03; Accident-analysis; Work-practices; Construction-industry; Construction-workers; Head-injuries; Traumatic-injuries; Roofers; 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