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Employee Safety


Employee Safety
The following is a summary of accidents that occurred and were documented by OSHA and city management. The
average total cost for a common slip and fall accident is $41,000 and the average death reimbursement is
$950,000 (NIOSH 2001 data):
Multiple Deaths Caused by Carbon
Monoxide in a Confined Space
A team was setting off explosives to excavate holes
for pipelines. Soon after detonation a man entered
one of the manholes used to set the explosives and
collapsed, one man went in to save him and
collapsed; another went in and also collapsed. The
first man died of carbon monoxide poisoning and
the other two had severe cases of carbon monoxide
Two Workers Die in Sludge Distribution
Chamber- KY
Two Workers at a Wastewater Treatment Plant in
Kentucky died in a sludge distribution chamber while it
is assumed, they were trying to retrieve a hatch cover
that had fallen in. The space was very confined and
several weeks later when the atmosphere of the space
was tested high concentrations of hydrogen sulfide were
found. No one knows the exact details of the deaths as
the observation camera was moved to allow entry into
the chamber.
Men Die of Oxygen Deficiency in Valve
Pit During Water Main Break. -OK
A team from the Water and Sewer Department was
drilling underground to put in some piping and hit
a water main. While they were attempting to shut
down the second of three valves one man called for
help, a second man went to help and a third man
went to investigate and called Emergency Services
when he realized there was nothing that he could
do. The two men died soon after they were
removed of Asphyxia due to oxygen depravation.
Man Dies While Cleaning a Clog in a
Conveyor Chute- NJ
A clog occurred because of cold weather in a sludge
conveyor chute, so the man , standing on a pallet on a
forklift, was raised by his co-worker to clean out the
clog, and somehow during the process fell, hit his head
on the bottom part of the conveyor and lost
consciousness. He was pronounced dead shortly after.
No one knows how he fell, but many unsafe conditions
were present at the time that could have contributed to
the accident.
A Police Officer and Two Sewage
Workers Die in Underground Sewage
Pumping Station Accident-KY
Raw Sewage began flooding a pumping station that
was undergoing maintenance. One of the workers
in the station was overwhelmed by the sewage, the
other worker was able to call for help, but was
overwhelmed as well when he re-entered the
station. The police officer entered the pumping
station and was overwhelmed as well. Several
others attempted rescue including a fireman who
fell and became unconscious, but help came too late
for the three men who were already dead from the
fumes and sewage.

Central Alabama managers (two different facilities)fall into clarifier and are knockedunconscious while cleaning clarifiers with hose.

Regular cleaning of the clarifier was necessary
which involved a 1” hose to spray off the algae. The normal practice was to stand in the trough which is in
the center of the clarifier 20 feet from the outer wall. The managers slipped on the loose algae on the
painted trough and fell into the tank and hit their head momentarily knocking them unconscious and
cutting their heads. Both situations the managers accidentally fell with an arm wedged in the trough
structure which prevented them from drowning.
When performing an investigation into accidents, OSHA asks if the unsafe task performed could have been eliminated or automated so
that the employee was never placed at risk. It is always the personal responsibility of facility management to never place their
employees in a situation where the employee could possibly die or suffer any bodily injury per OSHA standards. POTW are
required to meet OSHA rules except in extreme cases!

The control of algae, grease, foam, nocardia, etc. in clarifiers,areation basins, headworks, thickeners can all be automated, Inc. equipment .

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