Next time you want to address proper ladder use and fall protection with workers, you might want to use this story about a man who fell to his death when he was trying to reach a light fixture.
An OSHA investigation says Ismael Octtaviani-Mercado died from a 31-foot fall at the Palm Beach International Airport.
Octtaviani-Mercado had jury-rigged a stool to remove a light fixture, then tumbled over a rail and fell three stories.
Using the stool placed him higher than the nearby rail. Investigators believe he lost his footing and went over the rail.
Octtaviani-Mercado was working on an air surveillance radar tower that had been decommissioned after heavy damage caused by hurricanes in 2004.
He decided on his own to go to the third level to salvage light fixtures for use on an active tower. The fixtures are expensive, and it was common practice to salvage them for use elsewhere.
He was working alone when he fell.
OSHA doesn’t have the authority to fine other federal agencies, but it can perform investigations like this one.