Lehigh worker hurt by falling insulation

June 03, 1993|By Bill Talbott | Bill Talbott,Staff Writer

A 28-year-old employee of Lehigh Portland Cement Co. in Union Bridge was taken to Carroll County General Hospital yesterday after a large piece of insulating material fell about 10 feet, hitting him on the head and neck.

Richard Stine of Union Bridge was replacing bricks inside the No. 4 "clinker cooler" under a large kiln when the accident occurred, said plant manager David H. Rousch.

The insulation, described as about 12 inches wide, came loose from the wall of the kiln, bounced off tubing and dropped through a hole to the cooling chamber below, Mr. Rousch said.

Mr. Stine, who was alone in the cooling chamber, was wearing a hard hat as required by company and safety regulations.

He told company officials the material struck him on the head and then the neck before falling to the floor.

He was able to walk from the cooler and notify nearby workers of the accident before sitting to wait for an ambulance from the Union Bridge Fire Company.

Medics put a neck brace on the worker and placed him on N NTC wooden back board before moving him to the ambulance and taking him to the hospital, where he underwent exam ination and evaluation.

A dispatcher at the Emergency Operations Center, who initially was told that a worker at the Union Bridge plant was trapped under a collapsed concrete floor, also sent the rescue squad from Woodsboro in Frederick County. The unit was ordered to return before it arrived in Union Bridge.

On Nov. 5, six Lehigh employees were partially overcome by fumes from a tanker truck containing waste oil to be burned for fuel at the plant. All were taken to Carroll County General Hospital and released after an examination. The fuel was not burned.

The cement company was five days short of reaching 200 days without an injury causing loss of work time for one of its employees, Mr. Rousch said.

It has been about three years since there was a serious injury at the cement plant, he said.

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