Grand Rapids—this Wednesday, a 21-year-old window washer fell to his death from the roof of the Grand Rapids Art Museum. The Michigan Occupational and Health Administration is investigating the window washing company for potential violations of workplace safety.
Witnesses reported that the man fell face first and landed on the sidewalk below after the scaffolding he was attached to collapsed. MIOSHA’s initial findings point to problems with the man’s harness, which may have hit him and knocked him unconscious prior to his descent. After his fall, he was taken to Saint Mary’s Health Care in Grand Rapids, where he died.
This is the second accident involving the Grand Rapids-based window washing service in the past 26 months. The company received four citations back in 2007, three of which were classified as “serious” and carried a $700 fine each, after two workers fell about 90 feet outside of the Van Andel Arena when a basket lift machine they were in tipped and dumped them both to the pavement. Neither man was seriously injured, but the company received the citations for failure to provide training on safe use of the lift, failure to test the lift each day prior to use, and for exceeding the maximum height for the lift.