Hilarious – especially gor anyone who ever had to deal with a bureaucracy!
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
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, found that I had some bricks left over which, when weighed later,
were found to be slightly in excess of 500 lbs.
R ather than carr y 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 level, 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 175
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 equal, 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 experience a
great deal of pain.
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 on ly 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.