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Laborer dies of complications after receiving severe electrical shock installing a TV tower.

Indiana State Department of Health
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 93IN080, 1993 Nov; :1-4
A 51-year-old male (the decedent), a co-worker, and the employer were installing a TV tower at the side of a building housing the employer's business. A hole approximately one foot square was pre-dug to set the base of the TV tower. The hole was located about 34 inches away from the building and 20 feet horizontally from an overhead power line. The decedent and co-worker were on the ground positioning the tower, while the employer was on the roof of the building trying to guide and stabilize the movement of the tower. The movement and stabilization of the tower was being accomplished by using a 5/8 inch braided nylon rope secured about ¾ of the way up the tower. As the workers were trying to stabilize the TV tower into the pre-dug hole, it fell and contacted one phase of a three phase 7200-volt overhead power line. The electrical current traveled from phase to ground and the decedent and co-worker received a severe electrical shock. The decedent died two weeks later from complications. State FACE investigators concluded to prevent similar occurrences, employers should: 1. Contact utility companies to have power line insulated or de-energized prior to the commencement of any work tasks. 2. Evaluate worksites, identify hazards, and instruct employees in the recognition and avoidance of unsafe working conditions in proximity to overhead power lines. 3. Develop and implement written safety programs designed to enable workers to recognize and avoid hazards, especially electrical hazards.
Region-5; Accident-analysis; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Electric-properties; Electric-power-transmission-lines; Electrical-charge; Electrical-hazards; Electrical-properties; Electrical-safety; Electrical-transmission; Electrical-workers; Electricity; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Traumatic-injuries; Electrocutions
Publication Date
Document Type
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
FACE-93IN080; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-508672
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
Indiana State Department of Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division