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Shipping department employee dies after falling into floor opening on conveyor line - Virginia, July 12, 1995.

Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, FACE 95-15, 1995 Nov; :1-9
A 37 year old male loader/unloader employed by a furniture manufacturing company died after falling through a floor opening. The victim had been working in the warehouse for 2 weeks, receiving on the job training. The accident happened at point where furniture was transferred from an incoming conveyor line to an outgoing line. The victim's job was to remove furniture cartons from hangers of the incoming conveyor line, slide them across the floor to the adjacent conveyor line, and place them on hangers on the outgoing line about 8.5 feet away. The worker had been warned that he was working too close to an opening in the floor. At the time of the accident, the victim had been attempting to place a carton on a hanger. He was walking backward, attempting to adjust the carton more squarely on the hanger when he tripped over the water ledge across the opening in the floor, falling 11 feet 6 inches to the concrete floor below. He died the following day of head and chest injuries. It is recommended that employers ensure that floor openings be guarded by standard railings or covers, that employers establish safe work areas to ensure that work activities occur away from floor openings, that warning devices incorporating bilingual or symbolic language be displayed in work areas with floor openings, and that employers consider locating automatic conveyor shutdown devices at approaches to floor openings near work areas.
NIOSH-Author; Region-3; FACE-95-15; Accident-analysis; Safety-research; Warehousing; Traumatic-injuries; Head-injuries
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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