Furniture Plant Worker Electrocuted from Faulty Equipment

Furniture Plant Worker Electrocuted from Faulty Equipment

The victim was electrocuted while cleaning wood dust and debris from a gang rip saw at the Koch Tenn Inc. plant.

The Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development has issued $14,750 in fines against a furniture plant in the October 2015 electrocution of an assembly line worker.

The victim, identified as 26-year-old Jeffrey Chad Hensley, of Whitesburg, Tenn., was electrocuted while cleaning wood dust and debris from a gang rip saw at the Koch Tenn Inc. plant in Whitesburg on Oct. 7, according to a summary report issued Jan. 27 by state inspectors.

Tennessee Occupational Safety and Health and Administration found the flexible power cord to the saw had been repeatedly damaged by a motorized lift table used in conjunction with the 480 volt saw, the Knoxville News Sentinel reported.

The cord had seven points of damage, including two complete breaks that were improperly spliced and covered with electrical tape. A grounding wire inside the saw's power box also was found to be covered in insulation where it attached to the grounding lug, rendering it ineffective. Additionally, two of the three fuses inside the saw's main electrical panel had tripped, while the surge of electricity welded the third fuse open, allowing electricity to continue flowing through the machine.

Hensley's co-workers found him slumped over his station after they noticed supplies had stopped coming down the assembly line. When they touched the victim, they were shocked, the newspaper reported.

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