NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search

Paramedic dies in West Virginia following a fall from a bridge.

West Virginia Department of Health & Human Services
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 97WV073, 1998 Apr; :1-4
On November 15, 1997, a 34-year-old male paramedic (victim) died when he fell approximately 300 feet from a bridge to the rocks below. The victim and a co-worker were part of a two-man ambulance crew that had responded to motor vehicle crashes on an ice covered bridge at approximately 8:24 p.m. The victim was standing in front of a disabled vehicle and was talking with the driver when another vehicle traveling toward them spun out-of-control. The driver looked at the approaching vehicle and when she looked back toward where they were standing, the paramedic was not in sight. The co-worker, who had returned to the ambulance to locate chemical flares, searched for the victim with fire department and law enforcement personnel. Using search lights they located the victim on the rocks beneath the bridge. The injuries from the fall were immediately fatal, therefore no emergency first aid or CPR was administered. The victim was transported to a local hospital where he was officially pronounced dead at 10:36 p.m. Time of death was ascertained to be 8:30 p.m. The WV FACE Investigator concluded that, to reduce the likelihood of similar occurrences, employers should: 1. Develop, implement and enforce a comprehensive safety program that includes, but is not limited to, a thorough hazard analysis and utilization of controls specific to the job and employee training to recognize and abate or avoid unsafe conditions applicable to their work.
Region-3; 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; Safety-programs; Emergency-responders; Paramedical-services; Motor-vehicles
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-97WV073; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-312914
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
West Virginia Department of Health & Human Services
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division