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Case No.81

Fall while moving a ladder during work to prune Japanese cedars

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[Description of the Accident]

This accident occurred during preparations to carry out improvement work on a farm road.

The victim was carrying out work to prune some trees. At around 10:15 AM, when one of the workers was counting the trees for which the pruning had not been completed, he saw a chain saw fall from the tree on which the victim was working. The worker approached the tree and saw the victim lying comatose at the bottom of the tree.

After leaving the three lower branches, it is assumed that the victim climbed to the top of the ladder with the chain saw and started pruning higher branches that he could reach while wearing his safety belt. He then apparently removed his safety belt and started descending while holding the chain saw in one hand, lost his balance and fell.

[Causes supposed]

1. The victim did not use a safety belt with a supporting rope or pole strap, etc., while moving on the ladder, which was not in a stable position.

2. The victim tried to go down the unstable ladder, while carrying the relatively heavy chain saw (weighing 4.1 kg) in his hand.

3. Contrary to instructions, the victim was using a rather heavy chain saw for pruning work.

4. The victim was unaccustomed to pruning work.

[Type of business] Road construction work
[Caused by] Ladder, etc.
[Type of accident] Fall
[Number of victims] One fatality