Scaffolds Case Study
|These case studies
are part of tailgate/toolbox talks that were developed for use under
California OSHA regulations. The American Conference of Government
Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) has adapted these talks to apply to
federal OSHA regulations.) To contact ACGIH, visit its website (www.acgih.org)
One Killed, Three
Injured in Scaffold Accident
A 29-year-old hod carrier died and three co-workers were injured when
they fell from the fourth story of a pump house building that was under
construction at a reservoir.
The hod carrier and others had been spraying fireproof insulation onto
the structural steel frame of the building. They used a rolling tower
scaffold to gain access to the structural steel overhead.
Putlogs (types of trusses) had been added to the sides of the rolling
tower scaffold, and an extension platform had been built there. This platform
was used to reach the outer side of the structural steel.
On this day, a supervisor said a guardrail was needed on the scaffold.
The hod carrier joined three coworkers on the extension platform to help
install the guardrail. Their combined weight caused the scaffold to tip.
They were all thrown to the concrete deck 44 feet below.
The scaffold had not been engineered for the extension platform. No counterweights,
anchorage, or bracing were used. Neither the hod carrier nor his coworkers
were wearing personal fall protection. The scaffold and platform had been
constructed using parts from different manufacturers.
What should have
been done to prevent this accident?
Cal/OSHA investigated this accident and made the following recommendations.
- Ensure that scaffolds
are assembled according to the manufacturers recommendations.
If locally built, they must be properly designed and engineered.
- Ensure that no
extensions or auxiliary parts are added to scaffolds unless designed
and approved by an engineer.
- Ensure that workers
follow safe work practices when constructing scaffolds.
- Ensure that scaffold
load limits given by the manufacturer or engineer are not exceeded.
Case Study is based on an actual California incident. For
details, refer to California Dept. of Health Services, Occupational
Health Branch, Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
(FACE) Report #98CA017.
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and/or copyright holder and may not be reproduced without their consent.
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