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A hotel maintenance engineer died when struck by the counter weights of an elevator in Texas.

Texas Workers' Compensation Commission
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 98TX146, 1998 Oct; :1-5
A 51-year-old, male hotel maintenance engineer (the victim) died when he was struck by the descending elevator counter weights in a three-car hoist way enclosure. The victim was responding to a work request to locate keys that had fallen out of the pocket of another employee and through the opening in the elevator landing sill. Without reporting the work request to the superintendent, the victim entered the pit area of the elevator. When he did not see the keys in the immediate area, he walked through the pit of one elevator into an adjacent pit one floor lower. While the victim looked down into the pit, the counterweights from the elevator struck the victim on the back of the head and pinned him to the floor. The TX FACE Investigator determined that to reduce the likelihood of similar occurrences, employers should: 1. Include the elevator repair company in an initial evaluation of the pit spaces for compliance with the permit required confined space standard 29 CFR 1910.146. 2. Establish a procedure that prevents unauthorized access to the pit areas of elevators. 3. The elevator service company should develop procedures for isolating the power source of elevators that protects employees from contact with hazardous energy when entering pit areas. 4. Install guards to cover the face of the counterweights opposite the elevator's car.
Region-6; 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; Confined-spaces
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-98TX146; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-613936
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
Texas Workers' Compensation Commission
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division