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Q126 - Stray Bullet
A lineman is climbing a utility pole. The employee cries out suddenly and shortly thereafter goes limp. The employee is rescued from the pole and rushed to the ER where they discover a bullet wound and spends several days in critical condition in the hospital. It is believed that the bullet came from an individual who broke the rules at a nearby shooting range by firing his rifle into the air. Is it recordable?
YES. The injury occurred during in the work environment and is subject to the presumption of work-relatedness. OSHA recordkeeping is no-fault and therefore, even if this was not a preventable incident, it is still recordable due to it being work-related and resulted in lost time.
1904.5(a): Basic requirement. You must consider an injury or illness to be work-related if an event or exposure in the work environment either caused or contributed to the resulting condition or significantly aggravated a pre-existing injury or illness. Work-relatedness is presumed for injuries and illnesses resulting from events or exposures occurring in the work environment, unless an exception in §1904.5(b)(2) specifically applies