Case Study work accident

Sigchi4life
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Question description


Solar Panel Installer Dies from Fall



On the day of the accident, the victim
and his co-worker were carrying and installing electrical solar panels on the
roof of a warehouse. The roof contained skylights, which were marked by the manufacturer
as “tested in accordance” with OSHA fall protection standards. The general contractor
had reviewed the job safety requirements including fall protection plans. Based
on the information that the skylights had been tested in accordance with OSHA
standards, no other fall protection measures were implemented at the job site.
There are currently no uniform test criteria to determine material strength of
skylights to withstand worker impact. The solar panels were boxed and placed on
the roof by a crane. Each panel was approximately 2 feet wide by 4 feet long,
and weighed 24 pounds. The victim and co-worker were carrying two panels at a
time. As they approached a skylight, they had to maneuver around it with only
18 inches of clearance. The victim turned and walked backwards, tripping on the
raised edge of the skylight. He landed on the skylight in a sitting position
and then, without warning, the plastic dome glazing broke. As the victim started
to fall, a co-worker reached out and tried to grab his foot, but was unable to
reach him in time. The victim fell approximately 40 feet to the warehouse floor
below. Numerous workers with radios immediately called the office to report the
incident and those with cell phones immediately called 911. The paramedics and
fire department responded within minutes and pronounced the victim dead at the
scene.


What went wrong? What caused this
fatality? How could this accident have been prevented? Provide at least three
recommendations.



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