Cutoff Saw accidents

Use of aftermarket blades not able to handle the rpm.

No Face shield

Not holding the saw perpendicular to the body

Not using cribbing under concrete pipe so that the blade is not pinched when the pipe comes together.

Firm footing is a must.

April 2009. An employee was cutting cast iron pipe at the bottom of an excavation with a “chop saw” (Stihl model TS 700 cut-off machine). The victim was operating this hand-held powered saw to cut existing pipe so it could be removed and a new water main/meter was to be installed for the city. While operating the saw, the saw kicked-back and the saw blade contacted the neck of the victim. The victim’s trachea and right vascular carotid were lacerated. The victim bled profusely. Rescue services arrived and the victim was transported to a local hospital where he died.

November 2008 The victim was cutting a 6″ ductile iron pipe with a chop saw when the pipe dropped and pinched the saw. The saw kicked back and hit the victim neck on the left side. Stihl TS 400 Chop Saw
No load HI RPM 9800. Idle speed 3400 RPM. Blade does stop. Unit has an aftermarket blade, not approved by Stihl for use on this saw. Blade guard has been forced back over stop at some time. Evidence of melting on handle due to contact with muffler

October 2008 #1 was using a gas powered cut off saw (STIHL TS460) to trim a vertical riser (PVC) pipe when the saw kicked back, lacerating his leg. #1 stated he had used the exact saw to do the same task hundreds of times, there was nothing out of the ordinary at the time of the accident. The saw was in good condition and all guards were in place. #1 believes he may not have had a firm enough grip on the saw or he had too much pressure on the saw, causing it to bind up.

September 2008, a 54 year-old male was cutting an unsupported piece of concrete culvert with a STIHL TS400 Cutquik saw. The saw kicked back and struck the employee in the neck and killed him. The piece of pipe measured 8 feet long, 18 inches in diameter and weighed about 2,032 pounds. The pipe was being shortened in order to connect to the manhole of the sewer line installation portion of the project. The STIHL TS 400 weighed approximately 20 pounds and measured 28 inches long and about 12 inches wide. The deceased had been cutting pipe, on this project, for about 2 1/2 weeks. The employer did not have a standard operating procedure in place to address this task nor had the employee received specific training such as but not limited to supporting material that is positioned on uneven ground so that pinching of the wheel will not occur.

September 2008. Injured was using a STIHL TS-400 Cut-Off Saw to cut up used cars and associated parts on the lot. Per the only witness (owner), victim placed the saw on the ground while it was running and stumbled and fell on the saw, causing him to sustain a massive laceration to the back of his left knee and upper calf area. The evaluation of the operation of the saw after the incident determined that the saw blade did in fact disengage when the operator’s finger was removed. However, the manufacturer of the saw and the confirmed that the carbide tip saw blade placed on the chop saw should not have been installed on the equipment, as it is not rated for the speed of the saw. They indicated that the TS-400 Chop Saw is designed to spin the 14 inch grinding wheel at 5,350 RPM at the wheel spindle, so all wheels need to be speed rate at a higher revolution rate. They also confirmed that spacer rings are not to be used to adjust from a 1 inch wheel to the 20 mm spindle, which was the case with this saw.

September 2008, an employee was working on the restoration of a utility tower column in a coffer dam and sustained an amputation. The employee was using a gas powered “partner” saw to cut existing wood around a concrete column footing. The employee slipped in the mud. The saw blade was on momentum spin only but as it came toward the employee he instinctively reached out. He moved his left hand between himself and the saw. The saw blade amputated his left middle finger and injured his left ring finger. The saw was guarded.



May 18, 2009



Elevator Safety

May 10, 2009

ANSI A15.1 covers elevators.

Tribune revealed that 70 percent of Chicago elevators hadn’t been inspected in the last year

By Azam Ahmed and Dan Mihalopoulos

Tribune reporters

May 8, 2009

Mayor Richard Daley promised Thursday to dramatically increase the use of outside specialists to conduct elevator inspections after a Tribune story revealed that 70 percent of elevators in Chicago hadn’t been looked at in the last year.

By law, the city is required to inspect each of its 20,000 elevators every year, but a handful haven’t been looked at since 2001, according to the Tribune report.

The pilot program in which buildings would hire private inspectors is being tried in just one of the city’s 10,000 buildings. That building, at 401 N. Michigan Ave., was given the inspection form but no deadline for when it must be returned, officials said.

“We think we have to move along much quicker on that,” Daley said at a news conference Thursday.

The Department of Buildings said Thursday that Phase 2 of the pilot program is supposed to include 500 buildings and begin in mid-June. Later rollouts are expected every two months afterward, though that could change depending on feedback.

The use of private inspectors is already facing criticism.

The cost of hiring them would be borne by building owners and not the city, according to Department of Buildings spokesman Bill McCaffrey. The department would still collect a fee — half what it is now — to sign off on the private inspections, and in-house city inspectors would review buildings only once every three years.

Under the program, buildings will receive an inspection sheet that a private inspector must fill out. The cost to the building owner will be determined by the market. Once the sheet has been filled out, it will be sent to the city.

Building owners seemed to accept the added cost in stride, though they felt that instead of privatizing inspections, the city should provide more inspectors.

“We’re never happy about having to pay more for something we’ve been getting — at least in part — from city inspectors,” said Michael Cornicelli, executive vice president of the Building Owners and Managers Association of Chicago. “But if that’s the cost of ensuring safety of these systems, then that’s what we’re prepared to do.”

Others say there aren’t enough certified inspectors to work through the backlog.

Dick Gregory, an elevator consultant with Vertex Corp., said he determined there would not be enough inspectors to reach every elevator annually.

The city says there are enough but admitted to not knowing how many certified inspectors there are in the city or the state.

A review of the Web site for the certifying body, the National Association of Elevator Safety Authorities, shows 26 certified inspectors in Chicago and 157 in Illinois.

Skeptics say many of them have conflicts of interest, though, because they work for the maintenance companies whose work they would be inspecting.

The city’s response: Where there is demand, supply soon follows.

“If there aren’t enough, we envision there’s going be more people getting qualified,” McCaffrey said. “If there’s a demand for services, people will step up and be qualified.”



This was sent in by a friend. I would hope anyone seeing this would call OSHA.