Having to deal with the burden of renovating your home isn’t always the fun and cheery project you see on television. For those of us who aren’t the best with power tools and general labor tasks, repairing anything in the home can be a little scary. The incidents that you are going to read about will have you feeling sad, horrified, and maybe a little sick to your stomach. However, all of these stories are important reminders of how crucial being safe is while working on your home. The next time you aren’t paying attention and accidentally hammer your finger, it could be much worse! As you are about to see, just about any tool or situation can lead to dangerous and horrific outcomes.
I’ve included a select few workplace incidents that were too horrific to not make this list. I should also mention that more than one of the entries on this list can get a little graphic, you’ve been warned. The next time you go to tackle that weekend project, I hope you’ll think back to these incidents and be extra careful. On second thought, don’t think about these entries before starting a home project because you’ll probably put that project off. Let’s get our gloves on, put on our protective eye glasses, and grab a helmet as we count down 15 home renovation horror stories. Can you endure all of these DIY nightmares and make it to the number one spot on this list? Entry number six in this list will make you especially horrified!
15. One Injured, One Killed After Roof Fall
In Westport, Connecticut tragedy struck when two workers fell off a three-story roof. The fall happened at around 12:45 pm on a Sunday afternoon in 2016. Unfortunately, the man who died from this fall was instantly pronounced dead at the scene. The other worker was quickly rushed to the hospital and was treated for life-threatening injuries but he is expected to survive his injuries.
There was no foul play suspected in this incident, rather it was more of a tragic freak accident. This first injury on this list goes to show just how dangerous home repair can be. In the blink of an eye, an accident can become a deadly situation that someone is very lucky to walk away from. I’m sure the surviving worker knows how lucky he was to have survived such a fall.
14. Man Fatally Electrocuted While Working on Home
In Lihue, Kauai a man was killed while building a home. Gary Wiser had been hired on to work on a location near Halima Road. There was nothing to suggest that this day of work would be different from any other. What would happen should serve as a reminder of how quickly a workplace death can take place.
Wiser was helping someone on a crane get items from the road to move to the site they were working at. Gary grabbed the end of a cable and a jolt of electricity was sent throughout his body. Almost immediately Wiser hit the ground and co-workers rushed to his aid. Sadly, the recovery efforts were all in vain as Wiser was pronounced dead at the Wilcox Hospital. This story proves how dangerous electricity can be, as it is one of the most common sources of workplace injuries.
13. Buried Alive During Home Construction
In Ohio, a plumbing company landed themselves in hot water over the death of a worker. When you hear the details about how he died, you’ll really feel bad for this man. James Rogers was working on getting a trench built beneath where a newly constructed home would soon stand. What Rogers didn’t know was that OSHA found out that this company didn’t give proper protection for employees digging trenches.
While he was digging a 12-foot deep trench, the walls collapsed, burying Rogers alive almost instantly. The construction of a new home should be one of the happiest moments a homeowner will have. It seems likely that the home is now a sort of macabre memorial of a tragic workplace death. What makes this incident especially disturbing is that Rogers death was one of 23 contractors who also died in trench collapses. The 23 contractors who died from trench collapses all happened in the period of one calendar year!
12. Two Construction Workers Found Dead in Home…Under Construction
Bear with me, this next entry is very bizarre. No one said that all home renovation horror stories are solely the result of a faulty tool. A supervisor found a very disturbing surprise when he arrived at a home that was under construction. On Coneflower Drive, in Chicago, police were called after a report that two bodies had been found.
The police arriving on the scene saw that two construction workers had been shot dead. What makes this entry especially horrific is that not much more is known about these mysterious deaths. The whole situation raises a lot of questions. Why were these men shot while at work? What did these two men do that caused such a harsh act of revenge? So many questions but it looks like we won’t be getting any answers anytime soon.
11. Man Loses Foot Cutting Timber
In yet another incident of a chainsaw causing great harm, we now go to New Hampshire. A man was working out in his yard cutting timber when a fatal incident occurred. Due to one wrong move of a chainsaw, this man cut off his own foot. The foot was entirely amputated from his body and he was rushed to a local hospital. The sheer shock that had to go through this man’s mind had to be terrifying. This incident serves as another reminder of how much power chainsaws have.
How quickly we’ve seen limbs and lives lost, as the result of a chainsaw error shows how important being safe truly is. I’m the kind of guy who holds back the urge to freak when I slice my finger on a piece of paper. I can’t even fathom how it would feel to know you just cut off your entire foot, ouch!
10. A Headache no Pill Could Touch
Let this be a warning to any nail gun users, always watch out for the kickback. On December 19th, 2016 a man in Minnesota was working on his closest. Nick Thompson, in one of the gnarliest photos you’ll ever see (above), suffered a terrible accident on this fateful day. The problem happened when Thompson went to fire a nail into an area of wood he was working on, big mistake.
A nail had already been placed in the wood, setting off a series of events that would make anyone change their underwear in a hurry. After hitting the spot where a nail already was, the gun kicked back hard and lodged a nail into his face, specifically his eye. Amazingly, Thompson kept his sight and his brain injury-free, surgeons removed the nail without incident. Thompson took this horrifying accident extremely well and is proud of the images that were taken of his one of a kind workplace injury.
9. Tree Branch Knocks Man off Ladder
A common danger that ends up sending many people to the hospital would be the ladder. Climbing up high always has its own set of dangers associated with it. Tragically, a 73-year-old man from Pennsylvania suffered a freak accident involving a ladder and a tree. Carl Bodenschatz was working in his yard when he decided to climb up a ladder to cut down a tree branch.
When the branch finally came down, Carl wasn’t prepared for where it was going to hit. Sadly, the branch would hit Bodenschatz knocking him off of his ladder and onto the ground. He would die instantly, likely due to the impact of the fall. I’m sorry but why in the world was a 73-year-old up on a ladder doing this kind of work? I think now would be a good time for some of you to call your dad and see if he needs help with future yard work projects!
8. The Camera Sees Everything
Thankfully, this tale doesn’t end in a tragic death like the many others you will continue to see. It’s okay to laugh at this next entry, I won’t judge! A man in England was installing a camera outside of his home. I can understand wanting to get the position of the camera perfect but he probably should have waited until he got off of the ladder to fiddle with his cell phone.
While on the ladder, he is holding his cell phone in an attempt to fine tune the camera position. Unfortunately, he doesn’t concentrate on his balance and is sent crashing hard to the ground. Bonus points for him looking around to see if anyone else saw his tumble, you know that you would do the same thing! This entire situation is a scary but slightly funny reminder to pay attention while on a ladder.
7. Power Tool Explodes, Leaves Worker Dead
A sad story but one that is a reminder that you can never be too careful. This is a workplace accident but the sheer horror of it meant it had to be included in this list. Also, this is something that could have very well happened during the renovation of a home. A 53-year-old employee of the Maleny Dairies company had arrived for another day of work but this one would be much different.
While working with a grinder, the machine malfunctioned and exploded. The explosion would cause the grinder blade to be sent into this employee’s chest. He would be sent to the hospital where he would, unfortunately, pass away. His co-workers stated that the recently deceased worker was one who was always in a good mood and a great person to be around.
6. Chainsaw Accident Removes Four Fingers
A 55-year-old Austrailia man was working on finishing some renovations in his garage. As you know by now, this day of work was going to live in infamy. Cutting up a piece of hardwood, all it took was one movement of the saw and something awful happened to this man. In an instant, Andrew Armstrong, the previously mentioned man, accidentally cut off four fingers on his left hand.
Armstrong was shocked at how quick the incident happened. It is a terrifying thought to imagine something you’ve had attached for 55 years getting cut off in a split-second. Sadly, efforts made to reattach Armstong’s fingers failed due to the gangrene that had already set into the missing digits. Armstrong is currently a spokesman of sorts in Australia regarding matters of DIY safety.
5. Man Dies While Trimming Trees
One more workplace incident that had to be mentioned due to the horrific nature of the accident and its location. Outside of a primary school in England, a worker died after a tragic chainsaw accident. Making matters worse, this incident occurred within view of passersby who were adamant that this accident was very bloody.
What had killed the worker was, while he was cutting trees, he lost control of his chainsaw. Unfortunately, the chainsaw ended up going into the poor worker’s neck. The people who had seen the incident and even emergency workers couldn’t save this man, he was reported to have died at the scene. The one saving grace that occurred in this horrific tale was that the school was not housing students at the time of this workplace fatality.
4. Roofer Suffers Brain Damage After Roof Fall
The RP Construction company, based out of Idaho, was cited by OSHA after one of their workers suffered a gruesome death in December of 2016. What makes this story especially horrific was that this was the employees first day on the job.
Not even having the first day of work under his belt, this worker would end up falling off of the top of a roof. The man that fell suffered a massive amount of brain damage after the fall. This damage would go on to end up taking this man’s life, after not even completing his first day as a roofer. Needless to say, many questions were raised concerning how well RP Construction was training their employees.
3. Young Electric Worker Dies In Rainstorm
Starting a new job can be a stressful time. However, if your boss is giving you unsafe advice, it could very well be the last job you ever have. Jason Garrels was only 20-years-old working on getting electric work done in a series of townhouses in England. Jason’s supervisor had asked him to pick up a switchboard box before the workday was over.
Unbeknownst to Jason, there wasn’t sufficient covering on the switchboard, leading him to accidentally touch live wires. After grabbing the switchboard the jolt of electricity caused young Jason to drop this piece of equipment. Jason would go on to take a few steps and then he fell to the ground. The supervisor would be charged with manslaughter after news of this incident broke. The sheer audacity of a supervisor to ask an employee to carry through with such a reckless task was heavily spoken of in the news by Jason’s father, Michael.
2. Woman Crushed to Death by Faulty Window Frames
This is a truly scary tale of what can happen when renovations are done improperly. Amanda Telfer, a 44-year-old lawyer from London had recently had some work done on her office windows. Certain people noticed that the windows looked odd, almost like they were slightly moving. Any questioning about the window was too late for Telfer who was smashed to death by the wooden frames.
A strong wind had caused the frames, totaling in weight of over 1,400 pounds, to fall on her. This incident would create a court case in which it was argued that the construction company could have easily prevented this senseless death. In an absolute shocker, during the trial, it was reported that an earlier accident occurred in which a beam almost fell on another workers head! This incident did happen at a law office but if this isn’t a horrific renovation story, I don’t know what is!
1. Unattended Truck Fatally Hits Child
In Hillsborough, Horth Carolina, a family’s world was turned upside down, thanks to the result of a freak accident. At a nearby home that was being constructed a man had left his dump truck unattended. Alejandro Suarez, a construction worker, went to the bathroom and left the dump truck he was using in neutral.
The dump truck was already loaded down with building material and began to roll downhill. A group of workers tried to stop the fast moving dump truck but no one was able to slow the vehicle down. It was during the dump trucks descent down the street that it would hit five-year-old Everett Copeland. The sad death of this innocent boy happened on December 26th, 2016. Suarez was sentenced to 75 days in jail after this incident took place. One workplace accident, no matter how small it seems, can have devastating effects.