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Weekend Kansas fatality is nation’s 7th industry death in 2017

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

December 11, 2017 – UPDATE: Memorial services for Clayton Donnell Barnhill will be held at 2 p.m. Tues., Dec. 12, 2017 at the chapel of Riser Funeral Home, Columbia, La. with Bro. Shane Carter officiating. The visitation will be from 1:30 until time of service. Barnhill passed away Dec. 9 after falling from a tower near Ransom, Kan. Barnhill was born …

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FedEx Ground’s safety chief is President Trump’s pick to lead OSHA

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Scott A. Mugno, vice president for Safety, Sustainability and Vehicle Maintenance at FedEx Ground in Pittsburgh, Pa., has been nominated by President Trump to be assistant secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health. Whereas the former chief of OSHA, David Michaels, came from academia, Mugno comes from a safety-centric organization that has more than 100,000 fleet vehicles and more …

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Tower Family Foundation highlights its incredible results

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

In an act of transparency, the Tower Family Foundation, a 501c-3 non-profit, today touted the organization’s strong financial management and stewardship track record in an industry-wide announcement. Independent certified public accounting firm Vilhauer, Raml & Snyder LP calculated that the Tower Family Foundation’s administrative expenses for the year ending December 31, 2016 as a percentage of total revenue was 3.36%. …

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Copyright accusations fly as Washington adopts its extensive telecom safety standard

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

The State of Washington Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) adopted their Safety Standards for Telecommunications, Chapter 296-32, on Monday with a Jan. 1, 2018 effective date for the comprehensive 106 pages of rules. Industry associations had challenged some of the major inclusions, but the final version released yesterday saw mostly definition changes, and clarity revisions that do not require …

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Grant will provide hundreds of workers with rigger awareness training through NATE

In Associations News, Daily News Briefs, Training News & Initiatives by Wireless Estimator

The National Association of Tower Erectors (NATE) announced today that it has been selected by the U.S. Department of Labor – OSHA to receive a $155,000 Susan Harwood Targeted Topic Training Grant for the 2017-2018 program year. The Susan Harwood Training Grant Program awards grants to nonprofit organizations on a competitive basis. Awards are issued annually based on Congressional appropriation. …

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High angle rescue brings down two tower techs in North Carolina

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Two workers had to be rescued after being unable to get down from an approximately 125-foot Crown Castle monopole in south Charlotte, N.C. Thursday night. According to Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police, two techs were working on the tower, located at 1800 Rama Rd. when one of the men became ill. The other tower climber proceeded to help his coworker, but couldn’t assist …

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Three Tower King techs killed in Florida after gin pole rigging failure

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: Sept. 29, 2017 – Authorities have released the names of the three technicians who fell to their deaths Wednesday when a gin pole failed during an antenna installation project in Miami Springs, Fla. The men were identified as Marcus Goffena, 31, from Sidney, Ohio, Brachton Barber, 23, of Longwood, Fla., and Benito Rodriguez, 35, of Tampa, Fla. Brachton is …

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SEMC’s mission: Create commonality in wire rope climb terms, inspections, loading design

In Associations News, Featured News by Wireless Estimator

The Telecommunications Industry Registered Apprenticeship Program (TIRAP) recently applauded the work of the Safety Equipment Manufacturers Consensus group (SEMC) when it met at the USA Telecommunications Insurance Services facility in Atlanta, Ga. to finalize the first revision of the Wire Rope Climb for Antenna Supporting Structures Guide. SEMC has been working with the staff and leadership from the Telecommunications Industry …

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Technician rescued after he passes out on California emergency tower

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A 24-year-old tower technician was rescued by Long Beach, Calif. urban search and rescue experts yesterday afternoon after he became too weak to lower himself from a self-supporting tower in Long Beach. According to Jake Heflin of the Long Beach Fire Department, the man was about 50 feet up on the tower at the Long Beach Emergency Communications and Operations …

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California tower technician rescued by emergency crews

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A tower tech working on a 120-foot self-supporting tower in Los Flores Ranch Park, southeast of Orcutt, Calif. was rescued after he became weak and nearly fainted,  and could not descend the tower this afternoon. According to Santa Barbara County Fire Capt. Dave Zaniboni, the worker was doing repair work on the structure owned by the city of Santa Maria, …

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Discrimination lawsuit against Mobilitie mirrors plaintiff’s groundless racial issues with Bechtel

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A wireless construction manager has filed a discrimination lawsuit against Mobilitie, LLC, a nationwide wireless infrastructure service provider, alleging that the company “engaged in a pattern or practice of failing to hire African-American and non-Caucasian applicants” for numerous construction-related positions in its offices throughout the country. Rufus Lovell Brooks of Orlando, Fla. filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court for …

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Tech’s condition is stable after he allegedly rode guy wire down from an ATC Texas tower

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Update: July 11, 2017 – According to reliable sources, the company that the injured worker was employed by was Advanced Data Technology of Pearsall, Tex. Established in 1995, Advanced Data is a systems integrator of  voice, data, and video solutions in rural markets. The company did not respond to a request for additional information regarding the incident. The injured technician has …

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Crown sued for not having climbing safety devices on Texas tower

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A Michigan tower tech is suing a lift manufacturer and a tower owner in Harris County Texas District Court for more than one million dollars, alleging their negligence caused him to fall and suffer injuries in Richardson on January 29. Stevin Ammerman filed a complaint May 31 in Harris County Texas District Court against Safway Group Holdings LLC, Crown Castle …

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Tower tech’s 150-foot fall in Mississippi is nation’s second 2017 fatality

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Update: May 3, 2017 – Kris Edward Runyon, 39, has been identified as the tower technician who fell from a Crown Castle guyed tower near Meridian, Miss. yesterday evening and was pronounced dead at the scene. A resident of Portsmouth, Ohio, Runyon had been working for D&K Nationwide Communications Inc. of Bristol, Conn. for the past year, but according to the …

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Industry’s contractors readying for national safety stand-down

In Associations News, Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Next week’s national safety stand-down, May 8 through May 12, to prevent falls in construction, is an ideal time for contractors and other aligned businesses to take time out to discuss the very real problem in wireless construction of civil workers and tower techs injuring themselves. And even though the industry has not had any fatalities of a wireless worker …

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Crane collapse takes the life of a 51-year-old Texas industry worker

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Update: April 26, 2017 – The cell tower compound that RMCI’s crane toppled into is owned by Crown Castle International. April 25, 2017 – A 51-year-old industry worker was killed yesterday afternoon when a crane tipped on its side in downtown Dallas, Tex., crashing into a cell tower compound in the 1700 block of Arts Place, according to Dallas Fire-Rescue …

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Ivanka puts in a hostile bid for 3M, wants crown jewel DBI-Sala

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

April 1, 2017 – Traders were turned topsy-turvy yesterday afternoon after The Wall Street Journal reporter Ryan Knutson, in an exclusive interview with Ivanka Trump, said she had made a hostile bid for Maplewood, Minn. industrial giant 3M, offering a 46% premium for the company’s stock which closed Friday at $191.33. “Thulin [Inge G., 3M Chairman and CEO] will be hard-pressed …

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New Washington telecom construction safety regs could see widespread adoption

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Exclusive “quick links” document is available for rule review The State of Washington Department of Labor and Industries has submitted a 106-page Safety Standards for Telecommunications proposal for public review that is expected to be adopted in July following three public hearings. And even though it would just affect those companies working in Washington, it is possible that a number of other …

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Stung by hundreds of bees, tower technician is on the mend

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

A tower tech has recovered after being stung by hundreds of bees on March 15 in Las Vegas as he was working on a monopalm, according to authorities. The North Las Vegas Fire Department responded to a tower on Craig Rd. and Ferrell St. where a crew was working on the site and the bees started stinging them. One worker was …

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Tower tech in Kansas is injured after falling approximately 25 feet

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Update: March 20, 2017  – The tower tech that was injured on March 15, 2017 while dismantling a tower in Salina, Kan. is still in the hospital, but recovering, according to an individual knowledgeable of the accident. Randy Smith was employed by his own tower company operating under the business name of Randy Smith Tower Services of Rolla, Kan. March …

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Rappelling tower tech may be disqualified from receiving workers compensation

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

The Supreme Court of Georgia has ruled that a tower tech who disobeyed his supervisor’s instructions not to use a controlled descent and fell, severely injuring himself, may not be entitled to workers compensation benefits, reversing a Georgia Court of Appeals decision. Tower technician Adrian Burdette, employed by Chandler Telecom L.L.C. of Eatonton, Ga. during November 2012, according to the ruling, …

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No barriers in the way of the un-carrier’s drive to support tower techs/veterans

In Associations News, Featured News by Wireless Estimator

All carriers and tower owners support the need for a safe environment for tower techs, but T-Mobile has unfailingly gone the extra mile in its deeds and donations. The un-carrier, consistently ranked for having the nation’s fastest 4G LTE network speeds for its 72-million-plus subscribers, has quickly and deservedly captured a reputation for having the greatest concern for the safety of …

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Texas space program post says student was never in danger while climbing tower

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A representative of the Eldorado Space Program, an Eldorado, Tex. high school program that teaches students to design instrumentation packages and launch them into space, said on its Facebook page Saturday that a cover story photograph in the March edition of QST published by the National Association for Amateur Radio, represented an inaccurate, unsafe depiction of a student climbing a …

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Cover girl climber shot could send high schoolers to their death

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Commentary – The March issue of a well-respected magazine published by The National Association for Amateur Radio (ARRL) will most likely latch onto the literal lunacy award for depicting in a photograph the most egregious tie-off violations one could imagine. In QST’s latest edition, their antenna issue, the cover shows a picture of Chase Mertz of Eldorado, Tex. climbing a …

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Tower technician is seriously injured when a staged monopole section collapses on him

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Update: February 10, 2017 –  According to a tower technician who visited the hospital yesterday evening where Tobi Koons is being treated for his injuries, Koons is still in serious condition and is expected to be in ICU for at least a week. Two tower technicians who are friends with Koons, informed Wireless Estimator that he is employed by Mission 1 Communications of …

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Coax reel takes off down a highway in the direction of a tower

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

A number of Wireless Estimator viewers directed us to a YouTube video of a freewheeling reel of  what they believe is coaxial cable rolling down Route 40, heading east into Uniontown yesterday morning in Fayette County, Pa. You can view it in real-time, 10 times the speed and slow motion. A cell phone video captures the alarming wrong-way travels of …

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Welding crew kayos two carriers on Winnipeg airport cell tower

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

The U.S. doesn’t have exclusivity of crews burning down monopoles while welding, as witnessed Thursday in Winnipeg, Can. when a cell tower providing services to  MTS and Telus Mobility subscribers caught fire at the Richardson International Airport . An individual, knowledgeable of the incident, informed Wireless Estimator that a crew was cutting new portholes on the monopole when the transmission …

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Deceased tech was not near work area when he fell

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: December 13, 2016 – According to a representative of Motive Energy Telecommunications Group, Inc. (METG), their tower technician who fell from a roof and died in Chula Vista, Calif. on Nov. 23, 2016, was not near the telecom worksite area when the accident occurred. In a statement to Wireless Estimator, he wrote, “METG is informed that Matthew Vukasovich fell …

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X2 and X3 Lad-Saf sleeves need an immediate locking lever inspection

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

The Lad-Saf family of climbing sleeves are again in an unfavorable focus as 3M Fall Protection (formerly Capital Safety and DBI/Sala) has identified that a limited number of Lad-Saf X2/X3 sleeves were identified with the locking lever not working properly. In August, 3M issued a stop use and recall/replacement notice for their original Lad-Saf sleeve when incidents occurred involving a serious injury or …

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Tower techs’ lives are miraculously spared – literally by inches

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Although a Saint James City, Fla. wireless contractor lost a crew cab and utility trailer yesterday, and a Pompano Beach, Fla. crane company suffered considerable damage to their 120-ton crane when it crashed to the ground in North Port, Fla., thankfully no injuries were reported in an incident that could have easily resulted in being the most horrific multiple fatality accident …

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West Chicago telecom fiber optic worker electrocuted

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

Authorities in Sterling, Ill. Are investigating the death of a telecommunications company worker who was electrocuted yesterday while working on fiber-optic cable when the bucket on his truck came into contact with ComED power line. Robert Zulauf, 32, owner of Zucru Communications, was pronounced dead at the scene just before 1 pm., according to the Whiteside County Coroner’s office. Another …

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Checkered contractor loses lawsuit after two tower tech deaths

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Based upon substantial evidence to support their findings, a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit has kayoed a wireless contractor’s final attempt to vacate the company’s serious violations of OSHA’s General Duty Clause and $7,000 in fines they received following an accident that killed two of their employees on May 28, 2013. Both men, employees …

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Services set for tech who fell from a 160-foot Oklahoma monopole

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: Nov. 7, 2016 – Services have been announced for Steven Lamar Hill, 44, of Chandler, Okla. by the Barnes Friedrich Funeral Home, 1820 South Douglas Blvd., Midwest City, Okla. beginning at 1:00 p.m., Nov. 9, 2016. Interment will follow at Elmwood Cemetery in Choctaw, Okla. UPDATE: Nov. 3, 2016 – Authorities have released the name of the deceased tower …

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Survivor of horrific TV tower collapse killing seven shares his story after 45 years

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

On Sept. 7, 1971 in Shoreview, Minn., 32-year-old top tower hand Don Barnard’s supervisor asked him to handle some matters on the ground and he did not climb on that fateful day to assist his 20-year-old brother, Wayne, and five other members of the tall tower crew as they began to lift a section for the 1,280-foot tower’s candelabra platform. …

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Newest STAR Initiative contractor participants unveiled by NATE

In Associations News, Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

The National Association of Tower Erectors (NATE) today announced the member companies who have been formally approved to participate in the STAR Initiative program for the 2016-2017 year. “Companies involved in the STAR Initiative program have demonstrated that they are the cream of the crop and this year’s participants certainly live up to the high standards NATE has established through …

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Tower tech is rescued after a fall from a Georgia monopole

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Update: July 26, 2016 – According to crew lead Moses Wright, in a Facebook post this morning, his co-worker on a three-man crew is “alive and well”. Wright said, “It was a 20-30 foot drop and he was stopped by landing on top of our co-worker. We are not sure at this time why his safety grab didn’t grab. We …

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New York county fire official is killed while at tower site doing maintenance

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

The top fire official in Tioga County, N.Y was killed yesterday when a county pickup truck struck him while backing up, according to the county’s sheriff’s department. Tioga County Fire Coordinator John Scott, 71, of Campville, was one of several employees who were performing maintenance at a county radio tower on Carmichael Rd. in the Town of Owego when he …

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State by state industry deaths analysis provides a linch pin for continuing dialogue

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

For 13 years, Wireless Estimator has been compiling data on industry-related fatalities, and presented that information last month to a dozen public and private safety professionals for analysis to see if there are any common threads that could be explored to reduce tower climber deaths. The only commonality, however, was that although there were 116 fatality incidents since 2003, assigning any significance based upon …

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Tower workers compensated for heights and dangers while building the CN Tower

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Canada celebrated Toronto’s iconic 1,815-foot CN Tower’s 40th birthday yesterday as many of the iron workers who built it, lots of them now in their seventies and eighties, possibly celebrated that they weren’t killed during construction due to what appeared to be limited use of personal fall protection. But many of them photographed without any harness on didn’t appear to …

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A deceased Alabama tower technician’s family is struggling to bring him home

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

An Alabama tower technician was killed Saturday when the company vehicle he was a passenger in crashed into another vehicle that was towing a semi-trailer on I-10 in Hudspeth County, Tex. Adding to the tragedy, his family doesn’t have the funds to bring him home. Department of Public Safety officials said that 37-year-old Kenny Roach was driving on I-10 West …

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Rescued tech is in a two-week coma as his employer and OSHA wait to see if it is work-related

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: June 2, 2016 – OSHA said today that they have thoroughly reviewed the incident that resulted in a 38-year-old Tennessee tower technician lapsing into a prolonged coma after being rescued two weeks ago off of a cell tower in Bethany, Mo., and have closed their investigation after finding that the incident was not work-related. OSHA Kansas City, Mo. Area …

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Kentucky fall claims the life of a West Virginia tower technician

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Update: May 25, 2016 – The tower technician who died yesterday had been working on a project installing a 310-foot self-supporting tower for Appalachian Wireless. The Federal Communications Commission’s database identifies a construction completion date of May 25, 2016. Appalachian Wireless has built a number of towers recently. In March, they built one in Mud Creek, Ky. and in April, …

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Two tower technicians are killed in two separate incidents

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: May 23, 2016  – Burial services were held yesterday for Thomas Edward Taylor, 37, of Purvis, Miss. who passed away when he was electrocuted on a jobsite in Wadesboro, N.C. on Monday, May 16, 2016. He is survived by two brothers, David Busha of Lamar County, and Chance Taylor of Tupelo, his mother, Bertha Taylor of Lamar County; his fiancé, Susie …

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Frontier Communications technician dies while the company is swathed in complaints

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A Frontier Communications worker was working on overhead communications lines when he reportedly fell off a 15-foot-high ladder yesterday, according to Azle, Tex. authorities.  The 64-year-old man was found lying on the ground on West Main Street around 12:45 p.m. and had suffered a severe head injury. It is not known whether the service representative was part of a team …

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Participating in the stand-down? Let us give your company a plug

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

This week’s national safety stand-down to prevent falls in construction’s goal is to reach 5 million workers. If OSHA meets that goal, they will have touched more than half of the construction workers in the country. That count will double last year’s 2.5 million workers. Anyone who wants to prevent falls in the workplace can participate in the stand-down. In …

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Severely injured tower workers now eligible to receive scholarships

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

The Tower Family Foundation announced today that the eligibility criteria for its scholarship program has been expanded to include severely injured or permanently disabled tower workers. The revised scholarship guidelines are effective immediately and will ensure that eligible tower workers who sustain serious injuries on the job can now receive a Tower Family Foundation scholarship to continue their post-secondary education …

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Wireless industry tackles needed improvements for failing safety climb systems

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Officials from the Telecommunications Industry Registered Apprenticeship Program (TIRAP), which aims to promote worker safety, quality and efficiency within the wireless infrastructure industry, gathered representatives from wireless carriers, tower companies and safety climb system equipment manufacturers to hold a Safety Equipment Manufacturers Summit to maximize the critical role safety climb equipment plays in protecting climbers. The purpose of the gathering …

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Tower tech’s condition still critical after a safety climb failure in Texas; his rescuers are sacked

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: – April 21, 2016 – According to Troy White’s father, Mick Whitecotton, White is scheduled to undergo surgery on his left leg today. It was severely cut as the tower tech slid down a guy wire. Whitecotton said White was still in the trauma center intubated with a brace on his back. Nurses were able to allow him to stand …

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Safety trainer CITCA lands Jocko Vermillion to expand their services

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

Steve Wilder, Chief Operating Officer of CITCA, LLC of Bourbonnais, IL has announced that Jocko Vermillion will be joining the safety training organization effective April 18, 2016. Well-known in the tower safety industry, Vermillion will assume the role of Vice-President of Safety Management Services.  In that role he will work with both CITCA clients and with clients of CITCA’s sister …

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Ohio cell tower climber’s death wasn’t industry related

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A 20-year-old man who fell 70-feet from a cell tower in Oxford, Ohio on Thursday and died, was not an industry-related fatality, according to Miami University Police Chief John McCandless, who said it was a sophomore majoring in university studies from Seoul, Korea, and Beijing, China Although a number of industry workers contacted Wireless Estimator on Friday, stating that they …

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Over $13,000 in fatality citations vacated after Virginia’s OSH ignores a filing deadline

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: March 24, 2016 – Summit Tower Construction co-owner Allan Hadfield said today that although he welcomed the dismissal by a Waynesboro, Virginia Judge of six Virginia Occupational Safety and Health (VOSH) citations based upon a judicial filing technicality, following a 2013 fatality, he and his attorneys were prepared to show that his employee’s death was caused by an equipment …

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NATE and Tower Family Foundation Announce the Ernie Jones Memorial Civil Engineering Scholarship

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

University of Evansville Civil Engineering Scholarship to honor Jones’ legacy as a sructural engineer, industry icon The National Association of Tower Erectors (NATE) and the Tower Family Foundation today announced the official establishment of the Ernie Jones Memorial Civil Engineering Scholarship at the University of Evansville in Evansville, Indiana. The official announcement, honoring the legacy of the late Ernie Jones, …

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First climber death in 2016 reported in Iowa after tech falls from Hamilton County tower

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

The Hamilton County Iowa Sherriff’s Department has confirmed that a 28-year-old tower technician fell to his death yesterday at approximately 4:45 p.m.  from a cell tower. The man has been identified as Stefan Watermann who was employed by Tri-State Tower of Marion, Ia. A spokesperson said that Watermann lived in Anamosa, Iowa. The investigation is underway into finding the cause. …

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Great video tips unveiled in NATE’s 100% tie-off safety video

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

The National Association of Tower Erectors (NATE) today released a 100% Tie-Off Safety Video as part of the Association’s Climber Connection campaign. The video was released by the Association in advance of next week’s NATE UNITE 2016 Conference in New Orleans, La. The video highlights practical 100% Tie-Off safety tips for industry workers to follow to ensure that they are …

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Crew and subcontracting requirements could change with proposed OSHA/FCC best practices

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

If the best practices (BPs) being developed by the Federal Communications Commission and the Occupational Safety & Health Administration are implemented nation-wide, it is likely that the industry will see a marked improvement in fatality and injury counts. It will also assist in reducing the number of companies in the industry that provide lower bids because they’re not burdened by …

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Workshop panelists ferret out tower climber concerns and possible solutions

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

During his opening statement at a Department of Labor / Federal Communications Commission tower climber safety workshop on Feb. 11, 2016, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said that “everybody has to be proactive,” emphasizing the need to champion pre-emptive strikes by all wireless industry stakeholders in order to continue to improve upon a lower climber fatality rate that was achieved in 2015. …

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FCC Chairman’s zero fatality message is clear even with slightly different fatality count

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Thursday’s message at the Occupational Safety & Health Administration and the Federal Communications Commission workshop was loud and clear as stated by FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler. “The industry that provides world-class wireless service must have world-class safety for its employees and contractors. Period,” said Wheeler in his opening remarks during the half-day session (video available here) at FCC headquarters in …

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Ten days later, an unaligned Texas “tower” worker’s fall is still being reported

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

Commentary – When a Texas NBC affiliate posted a short breaking news bulletin on their website on Feb. 3, 2016 with the headline: “Emergency crews respond to man falling from tower on FM 54 in Hale County,” the link was immediately pasted on tower-industry Facebook groups. One social media poster even misinterpreted the headline and re-posted that the man fell …

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Australian tower tech’s death is a sad reminder of lower international fatalities

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

A tower tech fell to his death from a communications tower in Australia today, according to a local news report that stated he was 43-years-old and died after falling off of a structure near Adelaide River around 4:00 p.m., but offered no additional information. The worker’s death accents what appears to be a safer environment throughout the world for tower …

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TIRAP investigates life-threatening tower safety climbs, a problem that needs to be fixed

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

The Telecommunications Industry Registered Apprenticeship Program (TIRAP), announced the release of the latest installment in the TIRAP Telecommunications Video Series: “Safety Climb Systems.” Although it’s an instructive and well-produced presentation of the important role safety climb systems play on telecommunications towers, it strikes an uncomfortable chord in identifying the number of incorrectly installed safety climbs that are in the industry …

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Tech is asking for $75,000-plus after being struck by an angle adapter

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Update: Feb. 3, 2016 – The angle adapter referenced yesterday in a lawsuit brought by a Virginia Beach, Va. Tower tech that is suing American Tower Corporation after he was struck by it after it allegedly fell from the structure, was a “cable safety boot attached to an angle adapter with bolt that wasn’t attached to [the] tower properly,” according to …

Northeast Wireless Safety Summit presentations announced for Feb. 4, 2016 event

In Daily News Briefs, Safety by Wireless Estimator

HPC Wireless Services, a wireless telecommunications platform company servicing the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions, has announced the agenda for their 2nd Annual Northeast Wireless Safety Summit (NEWSS), taking place from 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. on Feb. 4, 2016 at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Tarrytown, N.Y. The NEWSS program includes panels, keynotes and demonstrations addressing the safety issues and …

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SBA seeks at least $1 million from two contractors after towers collapse

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Boca Raton, Fla.-based SBA Telecommunications LLC and SBA Towers have filed a property damage lawsuit against S&S Communication Specialists Inc. of Oklahoma, and FDH Engineering, located in North Carolina, following the collapse of two communications towers that resulted in the death of three people. The complaint filed last month, asking for at least $1 million, states that both companies were …

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Former OSHA construction safety chief believes some companies see agency’s fines as a ‘business cost’

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Jim Maddux, Director of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration Directorate of Construction, retired at the end of December from the position he held since Dec. 20, 2010. During his leadership at OSHA he was instrumental in creating a serious conversation about climber safety in America, and shepherding new proactive initiatives targeting the telecom industry. He began his carrer with OSHA …

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NATE’s 2016 educational campaign will also be tough on social media nonsense

In Daily News Briefs, Safety by Wireless Estimator

The National Association of Tower Erectors (NATE) today released a video trailer promoting its upcoming 2016 Climber Connection marketing campaign that will combat climbers on social media whose dangerous activities set poor examples for an industry with tens of thousands of technicians who work safely. Equally as important, it will highlight safe work practices. The Climber Connection campaign was developed …

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FCC and DOL announce second workshop on tower climber safety and apprenticeship program

In Featured News, Training News & Initiatives by Wireless Estimator

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and Employment and Training Administration (ETA) have announced preliminary details of a second workshop on tower climber safety and the Telecommunications Industry Registered Apprenticeship Program (TIRAP). The first joint FCC-DOL workshop on these subjects was held on October 14, 2014. The upcoming workshop, to be …

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Removing five diagonals and loosening 12 others cited for causing deaths, injuries

In Featured News, Incident Report News, Safety, Standards by Wireless Estimator

Four lawsuits that were filed in June against a tower owner and the contractor it hired to design and manage a structural reinforcement project in West Va. where two tower technicians died and two were injured after a tower collapsed, have worked their way from circuit court to federal court, and the defendants are alleging that it was the tower …

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Three people are rescued safely, but one still needs assistance

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

At about 1:00 p.m. yesterday, Tooele County, Utah and Marion County, Oregon emergency services were called into action to save three people who needed their assistance at two tower sites. One weather-related incident could have been avoided, the other event was an unpredictable action taken by a teen that thought her only option to end her unsolvable problems was suicide. …

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Telemundo’s WNJU tops the list at $900 million in FCC’s new repacking auction prices

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

The FCC has adjusted repacking opening bid prices for TV stations in the reverse auction, with Telemundo’s WNJU New York having the highest bid price at $900 million, with WCBS coming in second at $889 million. The changes do not impact the start date of the auction, which begins March 29, 2015. In order for broadcasters to have 60 days …

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Court rules that AT&T will stand trial in tower injury lawsuit along with other defendants

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

AT&T, Inc. was denied its request last week to be removed from a personal injury lawsuit brought by Thomas Jeglum, 26, against the company in the First Judicial District of Pennsylvania after the California tower tech suffered serious injuries when he fell in 2013 from a stealth tower site in Allentown, Pa. while performing an AT&T Mobility LTE upgrade. Judge John M. …

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Comp insurance is down along with project prospects for some wireless contractors

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Experience mod requirement of 1.0 or less seen as ‘ridiculous’ The good news for contractors, according to Bruce Eades, Regional President for Insurance Office of America, is workers compensation insurance premiums are going down from an average of $12 per $100 of remuneration to $6 based upon a change in NCCI Class Codes. But truly troubling news, Eades says, is …

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Services set for Ernie Jones, an industry safety and structural icon

In Featured News, Incident Report News, Safety, Standards by Wireless Estimator

Services have been announced for Ernest “Ernie” Raymond Jones, 64, of Lynnville, Ind. who passed away Wed., Oct. 21, 2015 while inspecting a tower in Oklahoma City, Okla. He was born November 5, 1950, in Evansville, to the late Raymond E. and June B. (Beldon) Jones. Ernie attended Rose-Hulman Institute for Engineering. He also attended The University of Evansville. He …

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Ernie Jones succumbs following tragic tower elevator-related accident in Oklahoma

In Featured News, Incident Report News, Safety, Standards by Wireless Estimator

An industry icon who helped shape and advance structural and safety initiatives during his service to the tower industry was killed yesterday in an elevator-related accident on a broadcast tower in Oklahoma City, Okla., according to individuals knowledgeable of the incident. Although there are few verifiable details, Ernest “Ernie” Jones had reportedly been working with a crew on KOCO’s broadcast …

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Broadband tower tech is severely shocked in Indiana incident

In Featured News, Incident Report News, Safety by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: Sept. 24, 2015 – John Richardson, 24, was identified as the man who was severely shocked while installing internet services yesterday. He is in a medically induced coma and will likely be so for many more weeks, according to a GoFundMe page that has been set up for his recovery which may take months. His wife, Elaina Richardson, will have to leave her …

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AGC’s survey identifies that wireless construction’s employment ills are similar

In Daily News Briefs by Wireless Estimator

If wireless construction contractors believe that because cell site construction and other craft needs within the telecommunications industry are unique, and it’s the primary reason why it’s difficult to hire qualified workers, they’ll see that a 2015 Workforce Survey by the Associated General Contractors of America released earlier this month mirrors similar difficulties nationally with other professions, with 86 percent …

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A conversation with TIRAP’s chief on human dignity and following industry standards

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Although Telecommunications Industry Registered Apprenticeship Program Chairman Scott Kisting embraces every opportunity available that will assist wireless technicians in working safer, he believes that there are two key components that ride above all others: human dignity of all within the workforce and the proper awareness, planning, education and application of existing standards. While there are many people at work trying …

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Deceased tower techs’ signatures were forged to falsely state they were W-9 contractors

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission Administrative Law Judge has found that a Louisiana tower erector’s owners, during a hearing to vacate a $7,000 Serious OSHA fine received following the death of two of the company’s workers in 2013, purposely misled the court, fraudulently altered documents and were deceitful in a number of representations, and he denied their …

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Carabiner’s use in lieu of shackle could have caused tower tech’s decapitation

In Featured News, Incident Report News, Safety by Wireless Estimator

The Kentucky Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (KY FACE) has released a comprehensive examination of an industry fatality that happened last year when a 28-year-old Indiana worker died in Cynthia, after he was decapitated by a cable when a 5/8” shackle failed while his crew was lifting a 1800-pound boom with antennas on it. One of the key findings was that …

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Man who fell from tower is stable, but news reports aren’t healthy with facts

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

On Sunday, weekend anchor Andrew Havranek for WDTV in Clarksburg, W.Va. provided a 29-second news story on a man that fell from a “cell phone tower” in Summit Park in Harrison County Friday afternoon. The incident, Havranek said, according to Harrision County EMS officials, required the worker to be flown to Ruby Memorial Hospital with a head injury, but he …

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Tower Family Foundation highlights founding donors at Vegas CTIA conference

In Associations News, Featured News by Wireless Estimator

Companies, organizations and individuals recognized for distinguished level contributions The Tower Industry Family Support Charitable Foundation today announced the list of founding donors who have made distinguished level contributions to the Foundation since the organization’s official launch in September 2014.  The Foundation made the official announcement at CTIA’s “Super Mobility Week” in Las Vegas, Nev. The non-profit Foundation has been …

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Texas climber succumbs to injuries after falling from water tower

In Featured News, Incident Report News by Wireless Estimator

Update: September 1, 2015: The employer of the 21-year-old Texas tower technician, Pedro Samuel Salazar, who died yesterday, Orbit Broadband, released the following statement: “We at Orbit are deeply sorrowed by this and our prayers go out to the individual and his family. There is an ongoing investigation and we are working with all those involved. Out of respect for …

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Some techs don’t appreciate the long history and reasons for riding the line CPLs

In Featured News, Safety by Wireless Estimator

Riding the line, when done properly, can be the safest method of ascending or descending a tower, but some industry workers continue to flout the current riding the line instruction that took safety stakeholders almost 19 years to get OSHA to agree to a compliance directive (CPL) that made sense. The picture at right, which could pass for a sepia-toned …

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Memorial fund set up after fiery crash takes the lives of five cell site workers in Florida

In Featured News, Incident Report News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE – July 31, 2015 – Memorial services for all five crew members that died following the accident earlier this week will be on Monday, August 3, 2015 at 4:00 p.m. at the Mission of Guadalupe Catholic Church, 2150 Bomber Rd., Eagle Lake, Fla.  The Wingate Communications Lost Employees Children’s Memorial Fund, has been set up to assist the deceased’s children. Donations have been coming …

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Safety alliance reaches out to tower techs and appoints two climbers to their Board of Governors

In Associations News, Featured News, Training News & Initiatives by Wireless Estimator

The National Wireless Safety Alliance (NWSA) announced today that Ed Owens from Broken Arrow Communications in Sacramento, Calif. and Kevin Schmidt from Sioux Falls Tower and Communications in Sioux Falls, S.D. have been selected to fill the tower technician seats on the organization’s inaugural Board of Governors. Owens and Schmidt were selected from a competitive applicant pool of 22 candidates …

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Tower contractor’s owner refutes report that his worker fell from a tower

In Featured News by Wireless Estimator

A Massachusetts contractor said that, although he had a worker who sustained jobsite injuries, his tower technician did not fall from a Crown Castle International tower yesterday in Gorham, Maine, as reported by a Maine newspaper. In a Portland Press Herald article, based upon a police ‘news release,’ an employee of Centerline Communications of Raynham, fell from the 300-foot guyed tower while …

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Four new lawsuits claim tower owner and its engineer are liable in deaths and injuries

In Featured News, Incident Report News, Industry News by Wireless Estimator

UPDATE: June 9, 2015 – Wrongful death lawsuits have been filed on behalf of the administrators of Kyle Kirkpatrick and Terry Richard, both of Oklahoma, who were both killed when an SBA Communications tower collapsed on February 1, 2014, and personal injury lawsuits were filed on behalf of Randall McElhaney, of Texas, and Jerry Hill, of Oklahoma, who also sustained …