Australian Bricklayer's Report
THIS IS GOLD!!
AUSTRALIAN BRICKLAYER'S REPORT
Possibly the funniest story in a long while. This is
a bricklayer's accident report, which was printed in the newsletter of
the Australian equivalent of the Workers' Compensation board.
This is a true story. Had this guy died, he'd have received a Darwin
Award for sure.......
I am writing in response to your request for
additional Information in Block 3 of the accident report form. I put "poor
planning" as the cause of my accident. You asked for a fuller explanation
and I trust the following details will be sufficient.
I am a bricklayer by trade. On the day of the accident, I
was Working alone on the roof of a new six-story building. When I
completed my work, I found that I had some bricks left over which, when
weighed later were found to be slightly in excess of 500lbs.
Rather than carry the bricks down by hand, I decided to lower
them in a barrel by using a pulley, which was attached to the side of
the building on the sixth floor.
Securing the rope at ground I went up to the roof, swung the Barrel
out and loaded the bricks into it. Then I went down and untied the
rope, holding it tightly to ensure a slow descent of the bricks.
You will note in Block 11 of the accident report form that I weigh 135lbs.
Due to my surprise at being jerked off the ground so suddenly, I lost my
presence of mind and forgot to let go of the rope. Needless to say, I
proceeded at a rapid rate up the side of the building.
In the vicinity of the third floor, I met the barrel, which
was now proceeding downward at an equally impressive speed. This
explained the fractured skull, minor abrasions and the broken collar bone,
as listed in section 3 of the accident report form.
Slowed only slightly, I continued my rapid ascent, not stopping Until the
fingers of my right hand were two knuckles deep into the pulley.
Fortunately by this time I had regained my presence of mind
and Was able to hold tightly to the rope, in spite of beginning to
At approximately the same time, however, the barrel of bricks hit
the ground and the bottom fell out of the barrel.
Now devoid of the weight of the bricks, that barrel
weighed approximately 50 lbs. I refer you again to my weight. As you can
imagine, I began a rapid descent, down the side of the building.
In the vicinity of the third floor, I met the barrel coming up.
This accounts for the two fractured ankles, broken tooth and
several lacerations of my legs and lower body.
Here my luck began to change slightly. The encounter with
the Barrel seemed to slow me enough to lessen my injuries when I fell
into the pile of bricks and fortunately only three vertebrae were cracked.
I am sorry to report, however,as I lay there on the pile
of bricks, in pain, unable to move, I again lost my composure and presence
of mind and let go of the rope and I lay there watching the empty barrel
begin its journey back down onto me. This explains the two broken legs.
I hope this answers your inquiry.