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Mechanic killed when aerial work platform collapses.

New York State Department of Health/Health Research Incorporated
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 07NY080, 2009 Jul; :1-10
In August 2007, a 54 year-old mechanic sustained fatal injuries when the aerial work platform he was riding on collapsed. Another worker suffered serious injuries and survived. The incident occurred at a college campus where the two workers were installing a sign on the campus Field House. The Field House is approximately 35 feet high and the sign was to be placed on the upper front section of the building. A boom-supported aerial work platform (aerial work platform) was used to elevate the workers. At the time of the incident, the victim and the co-worker were both inside the lift basket. Both workers wore personal fall arrest systems (PFAS) and the victim's lanyard was attached to the lift basket. The coworker's lanyard was not attached. At approximately 11:40 am, the boom of the work platform suddenly collapsed and the lift basket crashed to the ground. The victim and the co-worker fell approximately 40 feet. Campus security was notified immediately and paramedics arrived within minutes. Both workers were transported to a hospital where the victim died an hour later. The coworker suffered serious injuries and survived. The collapse of the work platform was determined to be caused by the failure of the upright level cylinder: the rod of the cylinder had broken away from the cylinder barrel. The investigation found that the rod assembly of the failed cylinder had been modified and this modification caused the cylinder to fail. Due to conflicting statements from the parties involved, the investigators could not determine who modified the rod assembly and when and where the modification was performed. New York State Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (NY FACE) investigators concluded that to help prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future, employers/owners of the aerial work platforms should: 1.) Prohibit unauthorized modifications or alterations of the aerial work platform; 2.) Ensure that after purchase of a pre-owned aerial work platform, the machine is thoroughly inspected by a dealer or a qualified mechanic before use; 3.) Ensure that periodic inspections and preventive maintenance are carried out in strict accordance with the manufacturer's specifications; and 4.) Keep and maintain operation and maintenance manuals of aerial work platforms; and 5.) Train all maintenance personnel to strictly follow the manufacturer's requirements when performing machine maintenance.
Region-2; Accident-analysis; Accident-potential; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Construction-equipment; Construction-workers; Equipment-reliability; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Occupational-accidents; Occupational-safety-programs; Protective-equipment; Risk-factors; Safety-education; Safety-measures; Safety-practices; Safety-programs; Training; Traumatic-injuries; Work-analysis; Work-operations; Work-performance; Work-practices; Author Keywords: boom-supported aerial work platform; aerial work platform; aerial lift; fall; cylinder failure; modified equipment
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-07NY080; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-OH-008474
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
New York State Department of Health/Health Research Incorporated
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division