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Print version ISSN 0103-6513On-line version ISSN 1980-5411

Prod. vol.29  São Paulo  2019  Epub May 13, 2019

http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/0103-6513.20180091 

Systematic Review

Falls from height: analysis of 114 cases

Tomi Zlatara  * 
http://orcid.org/0000-0002-8915-908X

Eliane Maria Gorga Lagoa 
http://orcid.org/0000-0003-0987-3492

Willames de Albuquerque Soaresa 
http://orcid.org/0000-0003-3268-7241

João dos Santos Baptistab 
http://orcid.org/0000-0002-8524-5503

Béda Barkokébas Juniora 
http://orcid.org/0000-0003-3130-3277

aEscola Politecnica, Universidade de Pernambuco, Recife, PE, Brasil

bFaculdade de Engenharia, Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal

Abstract

Paper aims

To study fall-accident cases in order to analyze the commonly missing or not adequately applied risk management measures (RMM) and its consequences depending on falling height.

Originality

First study to analyze failed RMM for preventing falls from height.

Research method

The study reviewed court cases published by the journal “Safety & Health Practitioner”. NIOSH recommendations were used to define RMM to apply to this study.

Main findings

Finally, in 98% of analyzed cases, the fall from height was a result of several non-adequate or missing RMM: in 81.6% procedures of work, 65.8% guardrails and edge protection, 60.5% risk assessment, and 60.5% platforms or scaffolds. It can be concluded that falls from height pose a significant risk for workers, which could be prevented by adequately apply RMM.

Implications for theory and practice

The focus in the prevention of falls should be given on most common RMM.

Keywords Injury; Fall accidents; Risk control; Workplace fatalities; Safety in construction

1. Introduction

Every day, people die as a result of occupational accidents or work-related diseases. In total, it reaches more than 2.78 million deaths and some 374 million non-fatal work-related injuries and illnesses each year (International Labour Organization, 2017). The human cost of this daily adversity is vast, and the economic burden of poor occupational safety and health practices is estimated at 3.94% of global Gross Domestic Product each year (International Labour Organization, 2017). Globally, among all, unintentional injuries represent a major public health problem and a leading cause of deaths (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2017). After road traffic injuries, falls represent the second leading cause of unintentional injury deaths worldwide. An estimation is a number of 646 000 fatal falls and some 37.3 million non-fatal falls each year, severe enough to require medical attention (World Health Organization, 2017). The construction industry represents the most influential group in these numbers, with around 21.4% of USA’s workers fatalities, where the leading causes were falls (38.8%) (Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 2017) and around 31% of UK’s workers fatalities, where the primary cause of falls from height (20%) (Bomel, 2003). The severity of fall-risk was investigated in many studies, analyzing the risk depending on occupation, age and location (Beavers et al., 2006; Dong et al., 2009; Johnson et al., 1999). Some went further, analyzing heights from which people mostly fell, the type and value of projects where fall-accidents mostly occurred (Huang et al., 2003; Kang et al., 2017).

Despite all of these studies and the risk of falling from height is clearly identified as a challenge to be solved. Even after several studies have investigated the reasons why they continue to occur and solutions to minimize hazards or eliminate their risk, the number of accidents due to falls from height continues to grow.

The objective of this study was to analyze the consequences depending on falling height and to investigate the risk management measures that were commonly missing or not adequately applied in preventing and controlling at the time when falls from height occurred.

2. Methodology

The methodology of this review was based on the PRISMA Statement for Reporting Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (Liberati et al., 2009). The searching process was conducted by using the Brazilian CAPES searching tool (Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior, 2017), by using the institutional IP address of the University of Pernambuco federate credentials. The following two keywords were defined: “fall” AND “height”. The selection process included first applying the exclusion, and afterward inclusion criteria.

2.1. Exclusion and inclusion criteria

The review only included court cases, as studies, published in the English language by the journal “Safety & Health Practitioner” (Institution of Occupational Safety & Health, 2017), as this journal made all the analyzed information open access. Afterward, the studies were excluded if repeated, then screened and excluded by title, considering only those related to falls from height, excluding if the fall height was unknown, if falls were from a standing height, if the person fell on material which absorbed the impact, or if suffered multiple falls. As inclusion criteria, only accidents were considered, while suicidal and homicidal events were excluded.

Additionally, this study included a previously conducted systematic review on falls from height (Zlatar & Barkokébas, 2018). This article serves as state of the art on the topic of falls from height, give indicators for the data analysis (fall accidents by height and by location) and develop the discussion part by comparing the results from this study with the results from previously conducted studies.

2.2. Data analysis

Statistical analysis was done by using excel statistical toolbox. The data were analyzed in accordance with rules specified in the following sections:

    A. Fall height and place

In order to be able to compare data with previous studies (Huang et al., 2003; Kang et al., 2017), the cases were distributed in four height-groups as given by previous studies:

  • Falls from a height between 0 to 3 m;

  • Falls from a height between 3 to 6.1 m;

  • Falls from a height between 6.1 to 9.0 m;

  • Falls from a height of more than 9.1 m.

The analyzed results include activities which were conducted before falling, the fall height and where it occurred.

    B. Consequence analysis

In order to better analyze the consequences of falls from height, the cases were divided into four groups according to the consequences:

  • Nothing injured (bruising, minor burns, and blisters, minor cuts on the head);

  • Temporary disability (fractured leg, ankle, ribs);

  • Permanent disability (serious spinal injuries or paralyzed from the waist down);

  • Death (including instant death and death which occurred after some time, but which was related to injuries suffered by the fall).

The consequences of the falls were then related and grouped according to the height of fall, determined by studies previously mentioned section in the “A) Determination of fall-height”.

    C. Risk management analysis

For risk management analysis, five categories were selected in order to evaluate which measures were applied to prevent and control workplace hazards, and therefore minimize or eliminate safety hazards. For this study, the NIOSH recommendations (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 2018) on the hierarchy of controls were reflected, considering the following categories and measures:

  • Risk Assessment (including identification and evaluation of the risk);

  • Elimination (to physically remove the hazard) or Substitution (to replace the hazard);

  • Engineering Controls (to isolate people from the hazard, including the use of work platforms, scaffolds, ladders, stepladders, guardrails, handrails, barriers, edge protection, and nets);

  • Administrative Controls (to change the way people work, including procedure, method, and plan of work, training certification, signs, lighting, warning labels, and supervision);

  • Personal Protective Equipment – PPE (to protect the worker).

This recommendation is commonly accepted by Safety at work engineers and practitioners to always start with the most effective possible measure (elimination), and when not feasible to apply it, go to the next measure of the hierarchy.

3. Results

The identification process resulted in 386 studies. All were screened thoroughly in order to exclude those that were not in accordance with the exclusion and inclusion criteria. Finally, 114 cases were included in this analysis (illustrated in Table 1A of the Appendix A).

3.1. Fall height and place

In the included studies, falling height ranged between 1.2 to 42 meters, where the numbers were: 19 cases between 0 to 3 m; 52 cases between 3 to 6.1 m; 21 cases between 6.1 to 9.0 m; and 22 cases of more than 9.1 m. The distribution of cases per group is illustrated in Figure 1.

Figure 1 Distribution of encountered cases by fall height. 

The location of all included cases was in the United Kingdom, ranging from the year 2003 to 2014. Nevertheless, this review did not analyze fall cases fluctuation during the years on one specific territory, but was primarily focused on consequences depending on fall height, among other analyzed questions. The building height and type was not specified by included articles. The type of working activity was mostly (in 65 cases, 57%) related to construction working activities (building, reforming or demolishing buildings), in three cases it was related to leisure time, while other (in 46 cases) were related to other working activities, such as sewage maintenance, vehicle repairing or boat building.

Figure 2 illustrates the most common places where falls from height occurred: on scaffolds/platforms (26-22.8%); roofs (30-26.3%); collapses, including collapses of floors, walls and staircases (4-3.5%); through opening, including falls through stairwells, trapdoors, lift wells or the glass panels in construction (15-13.2%); ladders and stepladders (10-8.8%); lifting, including lifting’s with forklifts (10-8.8%), and other (19-16.7%).

Figure 2 Most common places for falls from heights. 

3.2. Consequence analysis

The consequences depending on fall height were illustrated in Table 1, showing the number of cases and percentages for each of the four analyzed consequences.

As it could be seen from the Table 1, the consequence of not having anything injured was present only in fall heights below 6.1 meters.

Table 1 Fall consequences per height groups. 

Fall height (m) Nothing injured Temporary disability Permanent disability Death Total
between 0 to 3.0 1 (5%) 12 (63%) 4 (21%) 2 (11%) 19 (100%)
between 3.0 to 6.1 4 (8%) 27 (52%) 8 (15%) 13 (25%) 52 (100%)
between 6.1 to 9.0 0 (0%) 8 (38%) 3 (14%) 10 (48%) 21 (100%)
≥9.1 0 (0%) 4 (18%) 2 (9%) 16 (73%) 22 (100%)
Global 5 (4%) 51 (45%) 17 (15%) 41 (36%) 114 (100%)

3.3. Risk management analysis

Figure 3 illustrates missing or non-adequate safety procedures. In total, 5 main categories with 11 measures were illustrated: category 1 – identification, evaluation and risk control (measure 1); category 2 – risk elimination/prevention (measure 2); category 3 – engineering controls and measures (measures 3, 4, 5 and 6); category 4 – administrative controls and measures (measures 7, 8, 9 and 10); and category 5 – using of PPE. The data for each analyzed measure was divided into: missing (if the measure was not applied); not adequate (if the measure was not appropriate); additionally (if the measure should be revised if appropriate); and total (the total number the three mentioned situations).

Figure 3 Measures failed while working at heights. Measures: (1) Risk Assessment; (2) Risk Elimination (Prevention); (3) Work platform, Scaffold; (4) Ladder/Stepladder; (5) Guardrails, Handrails, Bariers, Edge Protection; (6) Nets; (7) Procedure of work (method, plan); (8) Training and Certification; (9) Signs, Lighting, Warning labels; (10) Supervision; (11) Personal Protective Equipment. 

4. Discussion

4.1. Fall height and place

Table 2 illustrates groups depending on falling height and compares the results from this study with results from two other studies. It is important to notice that percentages were a product of the analyzed cases and that in reality, it is probable to expect a much higher number of falls from lower heights, where falls are probably passing not recorded.

Table 2 Fall accidents by height. 

Fall height (m) This study Kang et al. (2017) Huang et al. (2003)
between 0 to 3.0 16.7% 22.1% 23.0%
between 3.0 to 6.1 45.6% 42.5% 28.0%
between 6.1 to 9.0 18.4% 6.8% 9.0%
≥9.1 19.3% 15.5% 40.0%

As it could be concluded from Table 2, this study found a lower number of cases with falling heights between 0 to 3.0 meters. The results from falling heights between 3.0 to 6.1 meters are in accordance with the findings from one study (Kang et al., 2017). The percentage of falls between 6.1 to 9.0 meters was higher, while the percentage of falls from heights ≥9.1 meters was in between both previously conducted studies.

In Table 3, the fall accidents by location were compared with findings from other studies.

Table 3 Fall accidents by location. 

Location of falls This study Kang et al. (2017) Huang et al. (2003)
Scaffold 22.8% 19.5% 15.4%
Roof 26.3% 24.7% 28.7%
Through opening (other than roof) 13.2% 5.6% 7.7%
Ladder 8.8% 16.0% 13.0%
Lifting 8.8% 5.3% 3.2%
Other 16.7% 28.9% 32.0%

Data analyzed through this review show that falls from height occur mostly when working on roofs, scaffolds, and platforms, representing almost 50% of all analyzed cases. Therefore, workers working at these positions are most endangered, were all mentioned risk management measures and procedures should be applied and revised on a regular basis. In accordance with the Table 3, some studies concluded that scaffolders and roofers are among the most exposed working activities, which is understandable as they spent more time working on heights (Bobick, 2005; Wong et al., 2016), and as they typically carry heavy and bulky materials on slippery and inclined walking/working surfaces (Wiersma & Charles, 2006). Further-on, innovative safety solutions should be considered, because as compared with one study (Cheung & Chan, 2012) comparing scaffolds, it could benefit to the safety of workers, reduce the cost of the equipment in use, increase durability and speed of setting the equipment, among other advantages. Most of the challenges about falls from height might be solved through tools (Ezisi & Issa, 2018) for implementing the approach of Prevention through Design.

4.2. Consequence of falls from height

Other studies did not analyze the consequence of falls from height; therefore it was not possible to compare the results. By comparing consequences among analyzed studies, the number of cases which resulted in no injury was very low (5; ≈4% of all analyzed cases). With only 5 cases it could be assumed that this is probably the most biased category, as it is reasonable to assume that many low-altitude fall cases happen on a daily basis, but most of them end with no or light injuries, therefore ending up unreported.

The number of cases which resulted in a temporary disability was the highest (51; ≈45% of all analyzed cases). Although workers did not suffer the more severe consequence, it can be seen that falls from height temporarily disabled further working activities, where it is probable to expect rehabilitation costs and loss of production.

Serious consequences were represented in a high number of cases, the permanent disability was encountered in 17 (≈15%), while deaths in 41 (≈36% of all analyzed cases). The fatal falls from a height above 9.1 m were responsible for 33.9% of fatal falls, which is in accordance with the findings from another study where falls above 9.1 m (30 feet in the article) were accounted for more than one-third of fatal falls (Dong et al., 2017).

Figure 4 illustrates the severity of the consequence depending on fall height (distance) and the percentage of occurrence of each consequence. It also illustrates the logarithmic tendency lines (chosen because they minimize the overall R2 value) with their equations for each consequence. The severity of injuries varied according to the falling height. Although falling from any altitude may result in any of considered consequences, the results show that falls from heights above 20m should result in death consequence, while other consequences could happen only by chance, therefore set up to height until 20m. Some cases were removed for the construction of the interpolations as have been considered as cases by chance and therefore withdrawn from Figure 4 (For example, the percentage of death consequences gradually increased as falling height increased, reaching 75% of death cases on height of 10m, and then being 100% on heights from 12 to 42m. From analyzed data, on falling height of 16m, there was a death consequence of 50%, not following the logical trend, and therefore considered as cases by chance and withdrawn from the figure).

Figure 4 Consequences depending on falling height. 

The Figure 4 illustrating the tendencies of consequences depending of falling height, show that as the fall height increase there was a tendency of:

  • Decrease for consequence “nothing injured” y=3.112lnx+13.03 ;

  • Decrease for consequence “temporary disability” y=19.84lnx+83.599 ;

  • Increase for consequence “permanent disability” y=15.437lnx+1.0332 ;

  • Increase for consequence “death” y=40.243lnx25.992 .

It is also important to notice that in some cases a consequence resulted in temporary disability, while it could as easily result with death. For example, in one case fall resulted in a person being on life support machines for 10 days (The Safety & Health Practitioner, 2006b) or in another case, being unable to return to work for 2 years (The Safety & Health Practitioner, 2013b).

The lowest altitude from which the person died was 1.8 m. By analyzing death cases from low altitudes, it was noticed that all died due to falling headfirst, received severe head injuries, fractured skulls or hit their head on the kerb (The Safety & Health Practitioner, 2005, 2006a, 2009, 2010a, b, 2013a). These findings are in accordance with a study (Türk & Tsokos, 2004) which found that head trauma was the cause of death in 11 of the 19 cases that were from 9m or less (58%). Therefore, as head injuries were found to be responsible for deaths on lower heights, it can be concluded that helmets would be an effective life-protection equipment for lower heights. On the other hand, analyzed deaths from heights over 10m (Türk & Tsokos, 2004) were caused mainly due to polytrauma (72%), and in only ≈24% cases (8/33) by head trauma.

In practice, falls from height typically occur when carrying heavy and bulky materials on slippery and inclined walking/working surfaces (Wiersma & Charles, 2006). Therefore, for working activities when this is the case, wearing helmets could be considered for activities on the same level, while for activities on height, special attention should be taken in applying risk management measures.

4.3. Risk management analysis

Figure 3 illustrates a total percentage of 11 failed risk management measures for analyzed cases. The administrative measure - the procedure of work (method and plan) was found to be the most common safety measure noted as “not adequate” or as “should be revised”, within 81.6% of analyzed cases. The engineering measure - guardrails, handrails, barriers and edge protection were found to be the second most failed safety measure with 65.8% (where it was missing in 33.3% of cases). Further two most commonly failed measures were risk assessment (60.5%) and the engineering measure - work platform/scaffold (60.5%). Inadequate PPE or missing PPE was noticed in 56.1% of the cases. By comparison, one previously conducted study found that in 48% of the cases workers fell due to their loss in balance while not wearing adequate fall protection devices (Wong et al., 2016).

It is also interesting to notice that training and certification were missing in 19.3% of the workers. This is important because training increases workers' perception and reaction to risk and, when conducted regularly, can improve safety performance and therefore the worker is more likely to identify, evaluate and control risks (Chan et al., 2008; Hinze & Gambatese, 2003; Rodríguez-Garz et al., 2015). In addition, it is essential to consider that training should be conducted in accordance with the individual characteristics of workers as age, position, trade, number of years of work, past experience with accidents, and personality, which was all found to contribute on how effective would be the training (Kim et al., 2011). Kang found that workers were not equipped with fall protection in 70.7% of cases, and were equipped incorrectly in 17.9% of cases (Kang et al., 2017). Although this could not be directly compared with results from this study, the same conclusions could be adopted – there is an urgent need to improve working safety culture and adopt adequate occupational risk management measures.

Missing or not adequate supervision was found in 22.8% of the analyzed cases. One study found that supervision is important as scaffolders failed to anchor their harness, not due to poor safety attitude, but due to a subjective norm (perceived social pressure) (Goh & Binte Sa’adon, 2015).

The 11 risk management measures illustrated in Figure 3 were further analyzed by each case separately. It was noted that most of the cases had failed several risk management measures. In the following Figure 5 were illustrated all 114 cases (100%) by the number of failed risk management measures (both missing and not adequate risk management measures) by each case, where 1 failed measure was only present in 2% of analyzed cases, 2 failed measures in 15%, 3 in 19%, 4 in 20%, 5 in 15%, 6 in 19% and 7 in 10% of analyzed cases.

Figure 5 Number of failed risk management measure from the analyzed cases. 

As it is shown in Figure 5, only 2% of the analyzed cases could be associated with one failed risk management measure, while in other 98%, the fall from height was a result of several non-adequate or missing risk management measures. Therefore, it is possible to conclude that in the majority of cases, falls from height were not a coincidence or an unlucky event due to only one fail, but that it could be promptly easily noted due to various failures, and prevented with daily safety screening of the working process.

4.4. Future studies

In order to be able to analyze fall consequences further and understand better how some factors benefit to the survival of falling from greater heights, there is a need to include more data on persons which fell and explain how it occurred. For example, fall (impact) energy could be calculated through data on fall height and human body mass: E=mgh (J).

Results on calculations regarding fall energy for four different persons (body mass of 60, 75, 90 and 105kg) were illustrated in Figure 6.

Figure 6 Human body mass an its relation to fall energy and fall height. 

As it is illustrated in Figure 6, the fall energy of 10,500J correspond to fall of a human with a body mass of 105kg from a height of 10m, 90kg from 12m, 75kg from 14m and 60kg from 18m. Therefore, a fall impact from the same height would be much lower for those humans having lower body mass compared with those with higher, representing a heavy person less chance of surviving a fall.

Future studies should also consider exploring with more details the employment conditions of workers which suffered falls from height, including the type of employment contract, the age, and experience of the worker.

5. Limitations

The limitations of this study lay in analyzing cases which were reported and recorded by the reviewed source. A bias probably lays in the number of no reported cases of falls from height, especially when the fall resulted in minor or no injuries which could be expected in falls from lower heights. Therefore, the percentages on injuries and death occurrences might not correspond to actual values, especially for lower heights. Finally, the analyzed data do not contain information on workers body mass, which would be interesting to analyze as it might have influenced the energy of fall impact, explaining why some persons survived falls from greater heights. Analyzing more cases would help in more consistent results and therefore understanding better the consequences of falls from heights, and possibly result with more or different consequence-based groups.

6. Conclusions

The falls from height represent one of the leading risks, causing more than 2.78 million deaths and some 374 million non-fatal work injuries each year. Through the analysis of included studies, it was found that a typical accident of falls from height would be in 45.6% from heights between 3 to 6.1 meters and in 49.1% occurring from scaffolds or roofs. The consequences this fall would result in death if the person fell on head and suffered head trauma, while if not, the percentage representing survival would be ≈55%, depending on the persons mass and also material on which he would fall. As the data show, there would be a percentage of ≈98% that several risk assessment measures were not applied. Among those not applied (failed) measures the reason would be: in 81.6% the procedures of work (administrative measure); in 65.8% the guardrails, handrails, barriers and edge protection (engineering measure); in 60.5% risk assessment; and in 60.5% work platform/scaffold (engineering measure). Therefore, it can be concluded that falls from height pose a great risk for workers, which could be prevented by adequately apply management measures.

Future studies should include more cases with data on body mass of persons which fell from heights, and evaluate how falling height affect each body part.

Appendix A

Falls from height: analysis of 114 cases.

This appendix file contains 4 tables, which illustrate all included and analysed cases within the article “Falls from Height: Analysis of 114 Cases”:

- Table 1A: Included articles, illustration of the article title, reference, year, type of industry and age of the injured worker;

- Table 2A: Included articles, illustration of the falling height by articles, consequence, injured body parts and recovery period;

- Table 3A: Included articles, illustration of the measures which were Not Appropriate (NA), were missing (0) or should be Additionally (A) considered among each one of included cases;

- Table 4A: Included articles, illustration of accidents which were related to most common falling places.

Table 1A Included articles, illustration of the article title, reference, year, type of industry and age of the injured worker. 

Nr Title Reference Fall year type of industry age of injured worker (yrs)
1 Fall from height: lack of access equipment led to injury The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2006, Vol.24(5), p.14(1) 2006 logistic group
2 Boat-building company sinks below safety standards. (FALL FORM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, July, 2012, Vol.30(7), p.15(1) 2012 boat building
3 Fall from height: site visitor fell into unguarded and unlit pit The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2006, Vol.24(11), p.12(1) 2006 motor vehicle repair and maintenance
4 Fall from height: ladder fall costs firm The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2006, Vol.24(3), p.16(1) 2006 meat packing and processing
5 Injured worker flouted company policy by borrowing ladder, says employer. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2008, Vol.26(5), p.16(1) 2008 dust control
6 Lack of work-at-height checks contributed to ladder death. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Jan, 2013, Vol.31(1), p.14(1) 2013 pub cleaning 65
7 Caretaker fell from unprotected platform. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2011, Vol.29(8), p.14(1) 2011 construction 54
8 Lightning strikes twice for ladder-fall spray-painter. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2012, Vol.30(11), p.12(1) 2012 a truck body shop 51
9 Double fall during poorly-planned maintenance job. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2012, Vol.30(8), p.15(1) 2012 vehicle engineering firm
10 Double fall during poorly-planned maintenance job. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2012, Vol.30(8), p.15(1) 2012
11 Film volunteer badly injured in fall. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, July, 2011, Vol.29(7), p.11(1) 2011 film firm 34
12 Fall from height: stage collapse and audience injuries see theatre companies in the dock The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2006, Vol.24(5), p.16(1) 2006 theater
13 Fall from height: stage collapse and audience injuries see theatre companies in the dock The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2006, Vol.24(5), p.16(1) 2006
14 Fall from height: “simple solution” could have prevented fall from ladder The Safety & Health Practitioner, Oct, 2006, Vol.24(10), p.18(1) 2006 unspecified
15 Fall from height: unprotected edge costs electric co [pounds sterling]17k The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2005, Vol.23(5), p.24(1) 2005 construction
16 Fall from height: unsecured ladder implicated in worker's fatal fall The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2005, Vol.23(5), p.22(1) 2005 panel installer
17 Fall from height: accident was “easily avoidable”. (Construction company fined over and accident in which bricklayer falls from the building) The Safety & Health Practitioner, June, 2006, Vol.24(6), p.15(1) 2006 construction
18 Fall from height: skull fracture sustained in fall through unguarded stairwell The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2005, Vol.23(11), p.15(1) 2005 construction 19
19 Internal fall risk overlooked. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2009, Vol.27(3), p.12(1) 2009 construction
20 Boss cut corners to save money. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2009, Vol.27(12), p.16(1) 2009 construction
21 Builder fractures neck in fall. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Oct, 2013, Vol.31(10), p.16(1) 2013 construction
22 Company director “wholly culpable”. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, July, 2009, Vol.27(7), p.14(1) 2009 construction 53
23 Fall from height: “rubbish” scaffolding costs Norfolk construction firm The Safety & Health Practitioner, June, 2007, Vol.25(6), p.14(1) 2007 construction
24 Construction firm fined over death at premier-league club. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2010, Vol.28(11), p.14(1) 2010 construction 42
25 Construction giant admits safety oversight. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Feb, 2009, Vol.27(2), p.14(1) 2009 construction
26 Death of Polish worker a wake-up call to construction bosses. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Jan, 2010, Vol.28(1), p.18(1) 2010 construction 49
27 Factory worker fell following catalogue of safety errors. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2012, Vol.30(3), p.14(1) 2012 boat building 59
28 Fall from height: corroded ladder snapped in two, hurling worker to the ground The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2007, Vol.25(11), p.18(1) 2007 brick and stone cleaning firm
29 Fall from height: engineer fell from forklift truck while repairing door The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2006, Vol.24(3), p.14(1) 2006 maintenance
30 Fall from height fatality results in [pounds sterling]75k fine for major scaffolding firm The Safety & Health Practitioner, June, 2003, Vol.21(6), p.6(1) 2003 construction
31 Fall from height: missing safety rail contributed to fall The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2005, Vol.23(3), p.18(1) 2005 maintenance
32 Fall from height: repair job wasn't properly planned The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2006, Vol.24(12), p.14(1) 2006 maintenance
33 Fall from height: steelworks fined for uncovered pit hole The Safety & Health Practitioner, April, 2005, Vol.23(4), p.24(1) 2005 construction
34 Fall from height: warning on overloading floors under construction following collapse The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2008, Vol.26(3), p.16(1) 2008 construction
35 Forklift service firm didn't consider risk of working on truck roof. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2011, Vol.29(11), p.16(1) 2011 a truck body shop 29
36 Legoland hits back at HSE over “unjustified” prosecution. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2013, Vol.31(3), p.16(1) 2013 maintenance 42
37 Pound stretcher fined after teenage employee breaks ankle. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2006, Vol.24(8), p.14(1) 2006 unspecified 16
38 Recycling firm's risk assessment was unrealistic. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2008, Vol.26(11), p.18(1) 2008 unspecified
39 Fall from height: worker fined for lifting colleague on forks of truck The Safety & Health Practitioner, Oct, 2005, Vol.23(10), p.14(1) 2005 unspecified
40 Fall from height: McDonald's isn't “lovin' it” after [pounds sterling]35,000 fine The Safety & Health Practitioner, Jan, 2005, Vol.23(1), p.14(1) 2005 maintenance
41 Fall from height: worker fell through unprotected gap in high-rise platform The Safety & Health Practitioner, Oct, 2006, Vol.24(10), p.14(1) 2006 construction
42 Fall from height: young worker fell from makeshift platform The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2005, Vol.23(12), p.13(1) 2005 warehouse 22
43 Fall from height: broken back leads to fines for two firms The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2005, Vol.23(5), p.24(1) 2005 clothing shop
44 Fall from height: worker paralysed in fall through trapdoor The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2006, Vol.24(5), p.18(1) 2006 chemical manufacturer
45 Fall from height: developer fined [pounds sterling]10,000 after worker falls through unguarded opening The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2004, Vol.22(12), p.18(1) 2004 construction 60
46 Fall from height: no surprises as retailer is fined over unguarded edge The Safety & Health Practitioner, April, 2005, Vol.23(4), p.19(1) 2005 leisure 22 months
47 Advanced rock-climbing lessons banned after pupil's 4m fall. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, July, 2013, Vol.31(7), p.12(1) 2013 leisure
48 Construction co failed to plan or monitor renovation project. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2013, Vol.31(3), p.14(1) 2013 construction
49 Fall from height: contractor hit with [pounds sterling]150,000 penalty for work-at-height deficiencies The Safety & Health Practitioner, Feb, 2005, Vol.23(2), p.16(1) 2005 construction 54
50 Fall from height: 'loose' sub-contracting in sewerage death case The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2006, Vol.24(12), p.11(1) 2006 sewage maintenance 51
51 Fall from height: worker needed facial reconstruction after fall The Safety & Health Practitioner, Feb, 2006, Vol.24(2), p.14(1) 2006 construction
52 No alternative available to dangerous lifting practice. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2009, Vol.27(8), p.18(1) 2009 unspecified
53 Fall from height: fatal fall was easily preventable The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2006, Vol.24(11), p.14(1) 2006 storehouse 62
54 Fall from height: scaffolding boards were not properly supported The Safety & Health Practitioner, July, 2005, Vol.23(7), p.16(1) 2005 construction
55 Fall from height: airline caterer fined over “very serious” incident The Safety & Health Practitioner, Oct, 2006, Vol.24(10), p.16(1) 2006 airline
56 Fall from height: fines follow fatal fall from defective ladder The Safety & Health Practitioner, Sept, 2005, Vol.23(9), p.17(1) 2005 electrical company
57 Fall from height: firms pay high price for scaffolding collapse The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2006, Vol.24(12), p.12(1) 2006 construction
58 Fall from height: roof fall leaves worker in wheelchair The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2005, Vol.23(8), p.14(1) 2005 agriculture
59 Lack of edge protection led to fatal scaffold fall. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Oct, 2009, Vol.27(10), p.16(1) 2009 construction
60 Boss tried to blame brother who sub-contracted him for demolition job. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Sept, 2010, Vol.28(9), p.12(1) 2010 construction
61 Crane fall leaves worker fighting for life. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, June, 2009, Vol.27(6), p.11(1) 2009 construction 41
62 Fall from height: Earls Court fined for poor safety procedures The Safety & Health Practitioner, Feb, 2007, Vol.25(2), p.14(1) 2007 exhibition center
63 Fall from height: edge protection was not installed for farm roof work The Safety & Health Practitioner, Feb, 2006, Vol.24(2), p.16(1) 2006 construction
64 Fall from height: firm owner's friend died in roof fall The Safety & Health Practitioner, Sept, 2006, Vol.24(9), p.16(1) 2006 construction
65 Fall from height: fragile roof was “totally unprotected” The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2008, Vol.26(3), p.16(1) 2008 construction 62
66 Fall from height: lack of edge protection led to fall The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2012, Vol.30(11), p.11(1) 2012 construction
67 Fall from height: next employee died during training exercise The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2005, Vol.23(8), p.14(1) 2005 warehouse
68 Fall from height: young worker blacked out and fell through unguarded lift well The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2007, Vol.25(3), p.14(1) 2007 construction 16
69 Foam firm fined for second time in a fortnight. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Jan, 2011, Vol.29(1), p.12(1) 2011 construction
70 Lack of edge protection led to contractor fall. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2012, Vol.30(11), p.11(1) 2012 construction
71 Fall from height: scaffolding fall costs two Welsh businesses The Safety & Health Practitioner, July, 2006, Vol.24(7), p.14(1) 2006 construction
72 Fall-prevention measures didn't work. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Jan, 2012, Vol.30(1), p.16(1) 2012 construction
73 Firm failed to discharge its duties as construction client The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2010, Vol.28(3), p.12(1) 2010 construction
74 Firms fined [pounds sterling]400k in scaffold-death case The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2011, Vol.29(5), p.11(1) 2011 construction
75 Fall from height: roofer death lands building boss in jail The Safety & Health Practitioner, Feb, 2005, Vol.23(2), p.11(1) 2005 construction
76 “Shambolic” system of work cost scaffolder his life. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2004, Vol.22(11), p.16(1) 2004 construction
77 Director failed to recognise risks posed by fragile roof. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2009, Vol.27(11), p.12(1) 2009 construction 28
78 Fall from height: workers told to use ladder for fragile roof job The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2007, Vol.25(3), p.12(1) 2007 construction
79 Maintenance contractor fell from unsecured makeshift platform. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2012, Vol.30(12), p.12(1) 2012 maintenance 34
80 Fall from height: boss tried to deceive investigators after fatal roof fall The Safety & Health Practitioner, Jan, 2008, Vol.26(1), p.13(1) 2008 construction
81 Fall from height: companies to pay [pounds sterling]125k after worker is paralysed The Safety & Health Practitioner, April, 2005, Vol.23(4), p.20(1) 2005 construction
82 Fall from height: company's “eyes were opened” by fall case The Safety & Health Practitioner, Sept, 2006, Vol.24(9), p.18(1) 2006 maintenance 19
83 Fall from height: construction boss jailed for failing to provide safe equipment for working at height The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2006, Vol.24(3), p.11(1) 2006 construction worker 1 (40), worker 2 (21)
84 Fall from height: construction boss jailed for failing to provide safe equipment for working at height The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2006, Vol.24(3), p.11(1) 2006 construction worker 1 (40), worker 2 (21)
85 Fall from height: ladder did not provide safe access to crane The Safety & Health Practitioner, April, 2005, Vol.23(4), p.22(1) 2005 foundry
86 Fall from height: lack of planning led to fall from height fatality on farm The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2007, Vol.25(8), p.14(1) 2007 agriculture
87 Fall from height: no method statements in roof fall The Safety & Health Practitioner, Feb, 2007, Vol.25(2), p.11(1) 2007 construction
88 Fall from height: roofer injured in eight-metre fall The Safety & Health Practitioner, July, 2006, Vol.24(7), p.12(1) 2006 construction 23
89 Architects and building firm both at fault in fatal-fall case. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Sept, 2010, Vol.28(9), p.14(1) 2010 construction
90 Fall from height/lifting: worker fell to his death during complicated lifting operation The Safety & Health Practitioner, Feb, 2005, Vol.23(2), p.15(1) 2005 construction
91 Fall from height: unguarded hole cost worker his life and property owners [pounds sterling]120,000 The Safety & Health Practitioner, June, 2005, Vol.23(6), p.14(1) 2005 construction 37
92 Fall from height: practice of hand-winding lift ends in disaster The Safety & Health Practitioner, Jan, 2007, Vol.25(1), p.12(1) 2007 unspecified
93 Fall from height: rooflight plunge costs contractor The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2004, Vol.22(12), p.18(1) 2004 construction
94 Fall from height: three firms fined over bus garage plunge The Safety & Health Practitioner, Jan, 2006, Vol.24(1), p.10(1) 2006 construction
95 Firm that ignored HSE advice fined [pounds sterling]145k. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2011, Vol.29(12), p.12(1) 2011 construction
96 Miscommunication led to worker's stairwell plunge. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2013, Vol.31(8), p.12(1) 2013 construction 32
97 Potentially fatal fall costs firms [pounds sterling]214k. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2009, Vol.27(8), p.18(1) 2009 unspecified
98 Fall from height: death at second Edinburgh hotel leads to [pounds sterling]400k fine The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2005, Vol.23(12), p.14(1) 2005 hotel
99 Fall from height: window ledge was not high enough to prevent fatal fall The Safety & Health Practitioner, Jan, 2007, Vol.25(1), p.12(1) 2007 construction
100 Big fines for two firms over power-station death. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, July, 2011, Vol.29(7), p.11(1) 2011 construction
101 Ignorance of regulations is no excuse, firm told. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2006, Vol.24(8), p.16(1) 2006 construction
102 Fall from height: sailor plummeted 12ft to his death on ship's deck The Safety & Health Practitioner, Nov, 2007, Vol.25(11), p.14(1) 2007 ship in a dry dock
103 Fall from height fatality results in [pounds sterling]75k fine for major scaffolding firm The Safety & Health Practitioner, June, 2003, Vol.21(6), p.6(1) 2003 construction
104 Fatal fall during T5 project caused by faulty fixings. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2009, Vol.27(12), p.15(1) 2009 construction
105 Fatal fall during T5 project caused by faulty fixings. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Dec, 2009, Vol.27(12), p.15(1) 2009 construction
106 Carillion to pay [pound sterling]94K after young employee fell to his death. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Sept, 2008, Vol.26(9), p.16(1) 2008 construction young
107 Fall from height: three parties prosecuted over fatal fall The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2005, Vol.23(8), p.12(1) 2005 construction
108 Maintenance worker jailed for four years after toddler's death. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2014, Vol.32(3), p.11(1) 2014 unspecified 2
109 £42 k to pay following scaffolding death fall (same page as Fall from height: ladder did not provide safe access to crane) The Safety & Health Practitioner, April, 2005, Vol.23(4), p.22(1) 2005 construction
110 Carillion fined [pounds sterling]130,000 for fatal fall. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, Jan, 2013, Vol.31(1), p.12(1) 2013 construction
111 Massive fine for fatal fall in 2004. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, August, 2012, Vol.30(8), p.14(1) 2012 construction
112 MD jailed for manslaughter of 20-year-old roof worker. (FALL FROM HEIGHT) The Safety & Health Practitioner, March, 2009, Vol.27(3), p.12(1) 2009 construction 20
113 Fall from height: contractor died when staircase collapsed The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2006, Vol.24(5), p.14(1) 2006 power station
114 Fall from height: failure to maintain lifts costs firm [pounds sterling]545,000 The Safety & Health Practitioner, May, 2006, Vol.24(5), p.13(1) 2006 leisure worker 1 (27),
worker 2 (25)

Table 2A Included articles, illustration of the falling height by articles, consequence, injured body parts and recovery period. 

Nr Height (m) NOTHING INJURED TEMPORARY DISABILITY PERMANENT DISABILITY DEAD Injured body part as described in articles Treatment/recovery/lost working hours
1 1.2 0 1 0 injured his knee
2 1.4 0 1 0 arm received treatment for a broken arm, unable to return to work for more than five months
3 1.4 0 1 0 cut to his head, fractured his right shoulder, and sprained his ankle
4 1.5 0 1 0 breaking his collar-bone and suffering concussion
5 1.8 0 0 1 0 severe and lasting damage to his back
6 1.8 0 0 0 1 fractured his skull
7 1.9 0 1 0 0 broke two ribs and one arm needed a three inch metal plate and multiple metal screws inserted into a broken arm
8 2 0 1 0 0 shattered left shoulder and collarbone, several broken ribs, a deep cut to his head he is unable to work owing to his injuries and still suffer considerable pain in his shoulder
9 2.2 0 1 0 0 worker 2 (bruised eye, cut on the back of his head)
10 2.2 0 1 0 0 worker 1 (broke his collarbone) worker 1 (unable to return to work for six weeks owing to his injuries)
11 2.3 0 0 1 0 fractured vertebrae in her back and has been left permanently paralysed from the waist down.
12 2.3 0 1 0 0 one individual underwent surgery to insert a metal rod in her shinbone and screws in both ankles,
13 2.3 1 0 0 0 others suffered shock and bruising
14 2.5 0 1 0 0 shattering his left heel bone
15 2.5 0 0 1 0 punctured lung and spinal fracture
16 2.5 0 0 0 1 severe head injuries
17 2.7 0 1 0 0 damaged ligaments in his left shoulder and a series of cuts to his head
18 2.7 0 1 0 0 fracturing a bone in his skull
19 2.7 0 0 1 0 severe head injuries hospitalized for more than four months. It is unlikely he will be ever be able to return to work.
20 3 0 0 1 0 broken spine had surgery to insert a metal disk into his back
21 3 0 1 0 0 fractured neck, arm, suffered soft tissue injuries to his kidney and hip several months on recovery
22 3 0 0 0 1 multiple skull fractures
23 3 1 0 0 0
24 3 0 0 0 1 in a coma for three months
25 3 0 0 1 0 fractured skull, broke all of the ribs on the left side of his body, and suffered spinal damage
26 3 0 0 0 1
27 3 0 1 0 0 fractured his right leg in four places off work for 10 months
28 3 0 0 1 0 permanently disabled, serious spinal injuries, internal injuries and cuts cant no longer work, suffers constant pain and psychiatric problems
29 3 0 0 0 1 fatal head injuries
30 3 0 1 0 0 1) no serious injuries
31 3 0 0 1 0 severe spinal injuries
32 3 0 1 0 0 multiple injuries, including fractures to his vertebrae, ribs and wrist
33 3 1 0 0 0 minor burns and blisters
34 3 0 1 0 0 4 workers suffered spinal fractures, broken shoulders, and fractured ribs
35 3 0 1 0 0 lost consciousness for several minutes after his head hit the ground, suffered severe headaches and a paintful swelling to his head, unable to work for some time afterwards
36 3 0 1 0 0 breaking his shoulder and several ribs off work for two months
37 3 0 1 0 0 broke his ankle
38 3 0 1 0 0 dislocating fingers on his left hand, breaking his left wrist, fracturing vertebrae in his neck kept in hospital for 5 days and had to wear a neck brace for three months
39 3.3 0 1 0 0 major injuries
40 3.4 0 0 1 0 serious spinal injury
41 3.4 0 1 0 0 shattered his ankle
42 3.5 0 1 0 0 crushed vertebra and fractured pelvis
43 3.6 0 1 0 0 serious injuries
44 3.6 0 0 1 0 paralysed from the waist down
45 3.7 0 1 0 0 8 broken ribs, broken collarbone and life threatening internal injuries
46 3.7 0 1 0 0 fractured skull
47 4 0 1 0 0 fractured heel bone
48 4 0 1 0 0 two fractured vertebrae and five broken ribs
49 4 0 0 0 1 suffering severe head injuries
50 5 0 0 0 1
51 4 0 1 0 0 broken pelvis, four fractured ribs and a damaged spleen, as well as the facial injuries. metal plates inserted in his mouth, jaw, nose, and eye sockets
52 4 0 1 0 0 fractured his leg and ankle
53 4.6 0 0 0 1 multiple injuries
54 4.8 0 0 1 0 paralysed below the waist
55 5 0 1 0 0 broken right leg, broken femur in his left leg, and cuts and bruising
56 5 0 0 0 1 fatally injured
57 5 0 1 0 0 suffered a severe head laceration, broken wrist, and a broken rib
58 5 0 1 0 0 multiple broken bones and head injuries long recovery, still in wheelchair
59 5 0 0 0 1 serious head injuries
60 6 0 0 1 0 16 skull fractures, damaging parts of the brain, removed parts of the brain, broken jaw in three places, deaf in his right ear and blind in his left eye.
61 6 0 1 0 0 multiple fractures to his skull, a broken collarbone, several broken ribs, and swelling to his brain discharged from hospital after five weeks but has been unable to return to work owing to the severity of his injuries
62 6 0 1 0 0 punctured lungs, broken ribs, broken limbs, bleeding on the brain three weeks in intensive care
63 6 0 1 0 0 serious injuries
64 6 0 0 0 1
65 6 0 0 0 1 fatal injuries
66 6 1 0 0 0 cuts on his head
67 6 0 0 0 1 head injuries
68 6 0 1 0 0 suffered fractured skull, brain haemorrhage, facial and leg injuries, and extensive bruising
69 6 0 1 0 0 suffered tissue damage off work for 6 weeks
70 6 0 0 0 1 serious head injuries several months in hospital with gradual recovery, however the brain injury he suffered exposed him to a much higher degree of infection
71 6.1 0 1 0 0 sustained double fracture of the pelvis, fractured elbow and head lacerations
72 6.5 0 1 0 0 suffered fractures to his spine, skull and ribs unable to return to work owing to his injuries
73 6.5 0 1 0 0 two fractured vertebrae and serious injuries to his hands.
74 6.5 0 0 0 1 serious head injuries
75 6.75 0 0 0 1 fatal injuries
76 7 0 0 0 1
77 7 0 0 1 0 fractures to his skull, pelvis, wrist, and right cheekbone, permanent damage to the optical nerve in his right eye
78 7 0 1 0 0 broke both his wrists, his ankle, his lef elbow, sustained a fractured skull with bleeding on the brain, and lost four teeth
79 7 0 0 1 0 multiple fractures to his skull, leg, back, wrist spent 10 days in hospital and remains on crutches. It is still unclear if he will ever be able to return to work.
80 7.6 0 0 0 1 serious injuries required surgery for a broken collar bone, after operation suffered a pulmonary fat embolism caused by his injuries
81 7.6 0 0 1 0 in coma for 6 weeks, now paralysed and confined to a wheelchair
82 7.6 0 1 0 0 50 broken bones
83 7.6 0 1 0 0 worker 2 (sustained a serious leg injury)
84 7.6 0 0 0 1 worker 1 (died)
85 7.6 0 1 0 0 suffering head injuries and a fractured pelvis
86 8 0 0 0 1
87 8 0 0 0 1
88 8 0 1 0 0 fractured jaw and substantial soft tissue injuries to his body and face
89 9 0 0 0 1
90 9 0 0 0 1
91 9 0 0 0 1
92 9.1 0 1 0 0 severed her leg and broke her ankle
93 10 0 1 0 0 injuries to his pelvis, back, heel bone and elbow
94 10 0 1 0 0 serious injuries to his arms and pelvis, severely brushing his heart, and suffering a collapsed lung. remained on a life support machine for ten days
95 10 0 0 0 1 fractured skull and developed post-traumatic epilepsy as a result of his injuries
96 10 0 0 1 0 shattered right elbow, broken vertebrae, fractured pelvis, and ribs, and damage to internal organs. he was unable to return to work for two years and can no longer work in construction
97 10 0 1 0 0 serious injuries
98 10.7 0 0 0 1
99 11 0 0 0 1
100 12 0 0 0 1 fatal chest injuries
101 3 1 0 0 0
102 12 0 0 0 1
103 13 0 0 0 1
104 15.24 0 0 1 0 2) multiple serious injuries, including fractures to his back, leg and jaw
105 15.24 0 0 0 1
106 17 0 0 0 1
107 17,5 0 0 0 1
108 18 0 0 0 1
109 18.3 0 0 0 1
110 19 0 0 0 1
111 22 0 0 0 1
112 25 0 0 0 1 head injuries
113 30 0 0 0 1
114 42 0 0 0 1

Table 3A Included articles, illustration of the measures which were Not Appropriate (NA), were missing (0) or should be Additionally (A) considered among each one of included cases. 

Nr Risk Assessment Risk Elimination (Prevention) Work platform, scaffold Stepladder Guardrails, Handrails, Barriers, Edge protection Nets, Other safety measures Procedure of work (method, plan) Training and Certification Signs, Lighting, Warning labels Worker's supervision Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
1 NA A A A
2 A 0 0 A A
3 0 0 0 A 0 A
4 NA NA NA A A
5 NA A NA A
6 NA NA 0 0 0
7 0 0 0 NA 0 0
8 0 NA 0
9 NA 0 0 A A
10 NA 0 0 A A
11 0 0 0
12 A 0
13 A 0
14 A 0 NA
15 0 0 A A
16 NA NA NA A
17 NA NA A A
18 0 NA A A
19 0 0 0 A
20 A 0 0 A A A
21 A A A 0 A A
22 0 NA A A A
23
24 NA NA
25 NA 0 0 NA A A
26 NA NA A 0 A
27 0 A 0 0 0
28 NA A
29 0 A 0 0 A
30 NA A NA NA
31 NA A A
32 NA NA A 0 0 0
33 0 0
34 NA 0 NA 0 A A
35 0 0 0 A A A
36 NA A A NA 0
37 NA A NA 0 A
38 NA 0 0
39 NA A 0 A
40 NA 0 A 0
41 NA 0 0
42 0 0 0 0
43 A NA A
44 0 0 0
45 A A 0 A NA A
46 A 0 A
47 NA A A 0 A A
48 A NA A NA
49 0 0 0 0 0
50
51 0 A
52 0 A A
53 NA NA A
54 NA 0 0 A
55 A 0 0
56 NA 0
57 NA NA NA A
58 0 A A A NA 0
59 NA NA NA A
60 0 A A A A 0 0
61 NA 0 0
62 NA 0 NA 0
63 0 A 0 0 0
64 NA 0 0 A A A
65 0 A A A A 0
66 A 0 A A
67 NA A NA 0 A
68 A 0 0
69 0 A NA A
70 NA 0 NA A
71 NA A A A 0
72 0 0 0 A A 0 0
73 A A A A NA NA A
74 NA NA NA NA NA A
75 0 A A A A 0 0
76 A NA NA A A A
77 A 0 A 0 A 0
78 NA 0 0 A NA 0 0
79 NA NA 0 NA
80 A A A A NA 0
81 NA 0
82 A A 0 0 NA 0 A
83 NA NA
84 NA NA
85 NA NA
86 NA A 0 A A NA A
87 0 A A A 0 0 0
88 A A A A NA 0
89 NA 0 A NA A
90 NA A 0 A NA 0 A
91 0
92 NA 0
93 A NA A A A 0
94 NA A
95 A A A A A 0
96 NA NA 0 A
97 NA 0
98 A NA A
99 NA A 0
100 NA NA NA 0
101
102 A A NA
103 A NA 0 A
104 NA NA
105 NA
106 A NA A A NA A NA
107 0 0
108 0 A A 0 A
109 NA NA 0
110 A A NA NA A
111 NA NA
112 A NA A 0 NA 0 0
113 NA NA
114 A NA NA

Table 4A Included articles, illustration of accidents which were related to most common falling places. 

Nr Scaffold/ Platform Roof Floor/ Wall/ Staircase Collapse Stairwell/ Trapdoor/ Lift well/ Glass panel in construction Ladder/ Stepladder Lifting (forklift...) Other
1 1
2 1
3 1
4 1
5 1
6 1
7 1
8 1
9 1
10 1
11 1
12 1
13 1
14 1
15 1
16 1
17 1 1
18 1 1
19 1
20 1
21 1
22 1
23 1
24 1
25 1
26 1
27 1
28 1
29 1
30 1
31 1
32 1
33 1
34 1
35 1
36 1
37 1
38 1
39 1
40 1
41 1
42 1
43 1
44 1
45 1
46 1
47 1
48 1
49 1
50 1
51 1
52 1
53 1
54 1
55 1
56 1
57 1
58 1
59 1
60 1
61 1
62 1
63 1
64 1
65 1
66 1
67 1
68 1
69 1
70 1
71 1
72 1
73 1
74 1
75 1
76 1
77 1
78 1
79 1
80 1
81 1 1
82 1
83 1 1
84 1
85 1
86 1
87 1
88 1
89 1 1
90 1
91 1
92 1
93 1
94 1
95 1
96 1 1
97 1
98 1
99 1
100 1
101 1
102 1
103 1
104 1
105 1
106 1
107 1
108 1
109 1
110 1 1
111 1
112 1
113 1
114 1

Acknowledgements

This project was financially supported by the Brazilian Ministry of Education through the Program for Coordination and Improvement of Higher Level Personnel (PNPD/CAPES). Many thanks for all the support from the Faculty of Engineering, University of Porto (FEUP), Federal University of Pernambuco (UFPE) and to the University of Pernambuco (UPE).

How to cite this article: Zlatar, T., Lago, E. M. G., Soares, W. A., Baptista, J. S., & Barkokébas Junior, B. (2019). Falls from height: analysis of 114 cases. Production, 29, e20180091. https://doi.org/10.1590/0103-6513.20180091.

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Received: October 11, 2018; Accepted: April 10, 2019

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