An insurance company asked for more information regarding a work-related accident claim
This was the response:
“I put ‘poor planning' as the cause of my accident
I am an amateur radio operator and was working on the top section of my new 80 foot tower.
When I had completed my work, I discovered that I had, over the course of several trips up the tower, brought up about 300 pounds of tools and spare hardware.
Rather than carry the materials down by hand, I decided to lower the items using a pulley
Securing the rope at ground level, I went to the top of the tower and loaded the tools into a small barrel.
Then I went back to the ground and untied the rope, holding it tightly to ensure a slow descent of the 300 pounds of tools
You will note in block number 11 of the accident report that I weigh 155 pounds.
Due to my surprise of being lifted off the ground so suddenly, I lost my presence of mind and forgot to let go of the rope.
I proceeded at a rather rapid rate of speed up the side of the tower
In the vicinity of the 40 foot level, I met the barrel coming down
This explains my fractured skull and broken collarbone.
Slowed only slightly, I continued my rapid ascent, not stopping until the fingers of my right hand were two knuckles deep into the pulley.
I regained my presence of mind and was able to hold onto the rope in spite of my pain
At the same time, however, the barrel of tools hit the ground and the bottom fell out of the barrel.
Devoid of the weight of the tools, the barrel now weighed approximately 20 pounds
I refer you again to my weight in block number 11.
As you might imagine, I began a rapid descent down the side of the tower
In the vicinity of the 40 foot level, I met the barrel coming up
This accounts for the two fractured ankles, and the lacerations of my legs and lower body.
The encounter with the barrel slowed me enough to lessen my injuries when I fell onto the pile of tools so only three vertebrae were cracked.
I am sorry to report, however, that as I lay on the tools, in pain, unable to stand and watching the empty barrel 80 feet above me, I again lost my presence of mind and let go of the rope!”