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Worker falls to his death in a telescoping boom forklift overturn.

Iowa Department of Public 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 03IA043, 2004 Aug; :1-77
During the summer of 2003, a 19-year-old construction worker died after falling 30 ft. (9 m) from the forks of a telescoping boom forklift. He was member of a five-man crew hired by a local greenhouse company to dismantle and relocate a large old barn. The company owner rented the forklift from a local rental service, where he received training in the basic operations of the machine. The owner's adult son was operating the forklift at the time of the incident. It was positioned partially on a driveway on the west side of the barn. The right wheels were on the driveway ramp and the left wheels were at a lower elevation on grass. The frame leveling control was set at its maximum position (12 degrees) to compensate for the sloping ground. The crew was removing the second rafter section that morning, taking apart joints and lowering sections to the ground. The victim was on the ground and rode up on the forks of the forklift, attaching the rafter to the forks with nylon straps, one strap to each fork. The operator then raised the rafter section up off the barn, with the victim standing on the forks, riding down with the load. At the top of this movement, the rafter piece and the machine suddenly shifted to the left. The machine fell over on its left side; the rafter crashed to the ground; and the victim jumped or fell to a grassy area on the ground. Emergency rescue was immediately called, and quickly transported the victim to a local hospital, but the man was dead on arrival due to severe internal bleeding. The operator of the forklift received minor injuries. Recommendations based on our investigation are as follows: 1. A telescoping boom forklift should not be used on an incline which exceeds the limits of the frame leveling system. 2. If a telescoping forklift truck is used to lift people, both the personnel platform and working procedures should comply with ASME standards (ASME B56.6-1992). 3. Employees should be adequately trained before operating lifting and hoisting equipment. 4. Employers must provide fall protection for employees working 6 ft. (1.8 m) or more above the lower level.
Region-7; Accident-analysis; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Traumatic-injuries; Work-operations; Work-analysis; Work-areas; Work-performance; Work-practices; Safety-education; Safety-equipment; Safety-measures; Safety-monitoring; Protective-measures; Personal-protective-equipment; Protective-equipment; Equipment-design; Equipment-operators; Equipment-reliability; Mechanics; Training; Construction; Construction-equipment; Construction-industry; Construction-workers; Demolition-industry
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-03IA043; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-708674
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
Iowa Department of Public Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division