Brief Description of Incident:
A Lineman was operating a smaller aerial bucket truck to remove a broken tree limb off of a neutral. The bucket was extended to its 28’ maximum off of the passenger side of the truck. He was also using a 10’ hotstick for additional reach to pull the limb off of the neutral. While tugging on the branch the Lineman started to feel the bucket lowering. He immediately started to lower the bucket and when approximately 5’ above the ground it tipped over.
Although the bucket was set up with under five degrees of slope there had been recent rains and road work that softened the ground which gave away under the passenger side of the truck. Further investigation identified that the Lineman hadn’t received formalized training on this vehicle and that this type of vehicle wasn’t to be used to tension cables or for pulling or lifting of lines.