Man crushed while working on car
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  1. #1
    1000+ Posts TroyO's Avatar
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    Default Man crushed while working on car

    A good example of why you should always have your hydro-Cit (any car for that matter) supported by stands while working underneath it.

    http://www.couriermail.news.com.au/c...5E1702,00.html

    Man crushed while working on car

    13feb06

    A MELBOURNE man was crushed to death while working under his car early today.

    The body of the 48-year-old man was found by a neighbour pinned underneath the car, a Citroen, at his house in Scott Street, Seaford, in Melbourne's south.

    "Police believe the man was doing mechanical repairs on his Citroen vehicle when the hydraulic suspension may have given way, causing the vehicle to fall and crush him," a Metropolitan Ambulance Service spokeswoman said.

    The man's name has not yet been released.

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    Police are preparing a report for the Coroner.

    Troy.

  2. #2
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    Holy crap! The poor guy.

    I hated working underneath the BX for that very reason.

    RIP

  3. #3
    UFO
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    Sad that this has happened to someone. A clear demonstration of why we always say that you should ensure your car is properly supported when working under it. Note I said "your car" and not just Citroen. People have been killed or severely injured by non hydraulic suspended vehicles too.
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  4. #4
    al
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    What does it mean by the hydraulic system gave way? Surely that can't mean that people put it onto the high setting and get under...? I would never trust anything made in france that much, particularly when it is attached to a citroen.

    I am so paranoid about this happening that i often use axle stands under the body, and more under the subframe. (as well as tyres/whatever under the sills)

    That is absolutely terrible anyway - it would be a shocking way to go.
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  5. #5
    1000+ Posts Dave's Avatar
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    it is simply user error if that is the case. Anyone that owns a hydro cit knows that once the car is turned off and the pump is not spinning the car is going to sink. Surely this poor fella had some stands or something which gaveway, I can't believe that any cit owner would get under an unsupported car, engine running or not.

    Even when i'm under a car that is up on stands I drag a couple of wheels or ramps around under the car with me so that there is something taller than me to take the weight if something was to shift off its stands.

    Dave


  6. #6
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    48years old ... And not enough sense to support a hydraulic Citroen before crawling under it My guess (to have the car come down so fast that it crushed him), was he tried to adjust the cars height by turning the clamps on the anti-roll bar. The car really does drop in the blink of an eye if you do this

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  7. #7
    UFO
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    Quote Originally Posted by al
    What does it mean by the hydraulic system gave way? Surely that can't mean that people put it onto the high setting and get under...? I would never trust anything made in france that much, particularly when it is attached to a citroen.

    I am so paranoid about this happening that i often use axle stands under the body, and more under the subframe. (as well as tyres/whatever under the sills)

    That is absolutely terrible anyway - it would be a shocking way to go.
    I think your comments are bit off course there - whether the car is made in France or is a Citroen is irrelevant. Other brands have used hydraulic suspension too - even Peugeot!

    The actual amount of movement required on a height corrector in relation to the amount of height difference it makes in the suspension of the car is only minor. I was "having a look" one day myself with the rear of the XM on ramps and moving the HC linkage a few mm made the difference between high and normal ride height. If for example the poor person had for some reason detached the HC linkage from the adjustment lever mechanism, the car would have more than likely immediately dropped to low position. Just like a hydraulic jack (trolley or bottle) failing.

    If you work under a car without proper safe supports in place, chances are you are going to have a car land on you one day soon.
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    Fellow Frogger! biologist's Avatar
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    Poor guy, I hope it was fast, crush injuries can be very painful.
    It doesn't sound like this was an AF'er, was it?

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  9. #9
    al
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    Quote Originally Posted by UFO
    I think your comments are bit off course there - whether the car is made in France or is a Citroen is irrelevant. Other brands have used hydraulic suspension too - even Peugeot!
    I certainly wouldn't trust it more if it had a pug badge... And yes, this probably isn't an appropriate place to be making citroen jokes.

    And tbh i am scared of hydraulics as i have no idea how they work... It seems a little bit too much like magic for me to trust. (and french build quality never provides much confidence...)
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  10. #10
    UFO
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    Quote Originally Posted by biologist
    Poor guy, I hope it was fast, crush injuries can be very painful.
    It doesn't sound like this was an AF'er, was it?

    Currently trying to find out if the person was known in the Citroen fraternity.
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  11. #11
    1000+ Posts TroyO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UFO
    If for example the poor person had for some reason detached the HC linkage from the adjustment lever mechanism, the car would have more than likely immediately dropped to low position. Just like a hydraulic jack (trolley or bottle) failing.
    How fast would it drop? I suppose if the bloke was well and truely under the car, it wouldn't have to drop that fast for it to matter.

    Troy.

  12. #12
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    In an extremelly worn dodgy car, it'd still come down in about 20minutes ... Most your talking several hours at the front, and overnight for the rear. The Xantias with anti-sink valves stay up for days.

    Regardless of all above .... You NEVER get under a hydraulic Cit that isn't supports ..... EVER.... for any reason.

    seeya,
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  13. #13
    1000+ Posts Dave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron
    In an extremelly worn dodgy car, it'd still come down in about 20minutes ... Most your talking several hours at the front, and overnight for the rear. The Xantias with anti-sink valves stay up for days.

    Regardless of all above .... You NEVER get under a hydraulic Cit that isn't supports ..... EVER.... for any reason.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    Craig was pointing out that the things move bloody quick when you change the height corrector settings on the roll bar! It can sink to the bump stops in a second.

    Dave


  14. #14
    UFO
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    As another example, I had the rear of the D on ramps one day bleeding the brakes. Deb (Mrs UFO) was the brake pedal assistant. I turned the bleed valve on the LR brake and the black/green goop came out via a hose into a jar, immediately followed by the rear of the car onto the bumpstops. Even knowing the ramps were there I uttered an expletive or two!

    When I did the RHS I knew what to expect.
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  15. #15
    Fellow Frogger! PSvensson's Avatar
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    Thats a terible accident!!!

    Yes they can drop in 2-5sec if you adjust ride heights.
    another dangerous way is if you put the lever (height adjust) to high an not put securely in the slot, it can pop out like if someone jumps in the car then (bink) the front end drops so fast you would not have much time to get out.
    I would never get under a car without ramps or decent stands and a couple of bricks behind each wheel.
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  16. #16
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    Indeed very sad to hear....

    And how fast they go down is also dependant on the model.... I notice that the later anti-sink Xantia's such as mine are quite slow to go down... at least 6 seconds for the front from right up to right down, and more like 10 seconds for the rear.

    But my mums 1993 without anti-sink goes down VERY fast - more like 2 - 3 seconds for both front and back to go right down from right up once it starts moving

    Also lets not forget the hydractive valve which can cause a very sudden rise or drop in height when it opens... so a faulty electovalve could easily cause an unexpected drop in height, or be triggered when a door was opened...

    I hope nobody on this forum takes risks like this unfortunate guy...

    Regards,
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  17. #17
    Tadpole Alan Macoustra's Avatar
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    A very tragic event,it reinforces safe working practices are essential!NEVER EVER get under or put body parts under UNSUPPORTED vehicle!!! Caught my neighbour changing the front brake pads on his car, with both legs sticking under the car and the car only suported by lousy car jack!! When I pointed out weight of car and the time it would take to crush his legs if flimsy jack collasped. He wisely went in seach of extra supports.
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  18. #18
    1000+ Posts Uga Boga's Avatar
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    Since we're such a small community, is he known to AF? Or does anyone from AF know him? If so, my condolences to his family...
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  19. #19
    1000+ Posts Greg C's Avatar
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    I give my sympathy to the guys family firstly, and then add to the safety warning we all know about, don't get under a hydropneumatic car at all if it is not supported.

    I like Craig have marvelled at how little a movement of the height control linckage can move the car up and down. We can speculate that the height control linkage might have been disconnected and if so the car could sink alarmingly fast, as fast as it goes down when you move the lever to low. If you were a long way under you would have no chance.

    But how many of us have got under the car when supported by a trolly jack; or not chocked the rear wheels when the front of the car is off the ground; or used stands that in my case I was warned about 12 years ago. (they are the type with a single square post coming off the base plate. I was warned about them after a tech day in 1994 and still use them). I am guilty of all of them. Yes I put any wheels that are off under the car but best to be sure you will never need them


    Time to take heed and learn the lesson of this unfortunate accident.

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  20. #20
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    THe cx drops like a rock in water. I don't even dare to look underneath mine unless safely put on stands. But it is scary anyhow as I drive on salted roads wintertime, never know whats left of the metal, and if the stands are going to go through the sills.. so tires and all sorts go under as well

  21. #21
    Contented Peugeot Driver addo's Avatar
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    I had a near miss several months ago when a well-meaning helper rocked the car (R16) within 3/16" off its chassis stands. They took the instruction "just wiggle it slightly" with too much gusto.

    Sometimes if a repair has been dragging the chain, we all make an impromptu decision; one that may be risky, or destructive, or brilliantly successful. No way can I criticise this poor bloke.

    Whether or not he was a member of AF is irrelevant. He owned a distinctive car, and obviously cared sufficiently to do his own repairs. As others have done, I too extend my condolences to the fellow's family.

    Adam.

  22. #22
    1000+ Posts HONG KONG PUGGY's Avatar
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    Our condolences to his family too.
    I too can not believe that abyone would even think of doing anything even relating to work on an unsupported car.

    My only problem with the story is the mention of the car as a Citroen. If he had been crushed by a commodore or falcon would anyone have mentioned the brand?? I think not. Poor judgement on the editors part not to omit that because in some minds the car would be to blame firstly and not the more probable cause of human error.
    Still doesn't take away from the gravity of the situation....ALWAYS USE A STAND

    ( I am like Al, I can never have enough stands/blocks...I have a couple of 5''x5'' blocks I use too)
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  23. #23
    1000+ Posts cruiserman's Avatar
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    The only vehicle I have that I will get under to do anything on with out it on stands is my 'cruiser fortunately I can move around happily under there and remove the transfer case or gearbox with the wheels still firmly on the ground other than that I would rather not try to hold up the three tonnes it weighs.
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  24. #24
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    poor bloke

    what a terrible way to go

    like that old boy who fell over while feeding his cat and impaled himself on a broken plate

  25. #25
    SMP addict pugjet's Avatar
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    yeah poor bloke.

    far out whatta painful way to go.

    wonder if he had made any safety measures, like cocking the raised end with tyres or bricks.

    like me, does anyone here have any hesitations with working on the underside of a car, even with said precutions?

    time to invest in a proper backyarder set-up.
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