Preparing for freezing nighttime temperatures following the daily work activities can be necessary to avoid frozen equipment at the start of winter work days. Each year during the late fall and winter months, crews drain water and fixative lines at the end of the daily work activities. Attempts have been made to drain the lines by walking the hoses down, however it was found that when using the walkdown method, the water does not always completely drain from the hoses. Additionally portions of the hoses may be submerged in mud or water, or they may be encased due to the work taking place.
During a recent blow-down activity, workers secured a hose manually. The blow-down ball valve controlling the airflow was opened about an eighth of a turn at which point the hose immediately whipped, striking a nearby worker in the hand.
Lesson Learned: In preparing to blow-down a 2.5" - 3" water hose to prevent overnight freezing, the Project failed to recognize the hazard in not securing the hose mechanically.
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