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Warehouse worker dies from fall Inside an elevator shaft in Colorado.

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment
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 92CO056, 1994 Jan; :1-2
A warehouse worker at a distributor of styrofoam products was fatally injured when he exited an elevator that was in motion. In this incident the newly employed worker was starting work the morning of July 13, 1993. This would have been his second day on the job. A co-worker instructed him to go to the second level of the warehouse to cut forms out of styrofoam sheets. The co-worker assisted the new employee in starting a cable activated freight elevator to take him to the second level of the warehouse. The cable housing on the elevator was equipped with a manual switch that would automatically stop the elevator at the next level. The co-worker activated this switch and pulled on the cable which started the elevator in motion upwards. The original second floor of this building had been removed at sometime in the past and the elevator opening to the now non-existent second floor had been permanently blocked. It is thought that when the elevator passed this opening the deceased thinking he had missed his floor, panicked and exited the elevator while it was still in motion. He was able to get between the elevator and the wall of the elevator shaft. When the elevator passed above him he lost his grip and fell 3 stories to the concrete floor of the shaft. The co-worker on the first floor heard noises in the shaft and witnessed the deceased falling past the first floor. The elevator was still in motion at this time. The Colorado Department of Health (CDH) investigator concluded that to prevent future similar occurrences, employers should: 1. Ensure that all new employees are completely trained in the operation of equipment that they will be required to operate. 2. Develop, implement, and enforce a comprehensive written safety program. 3. Conduct a job-site survey on a regular basis to identify potential hazards, implement appropriate control measures, and provide subsequent training to employees that specifically addresses all identified hazards.
Region-8; 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-protection; Training; Warehousing
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-92CO056; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-808518
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division