Poor Planning


I am writing in response to your request for additional information in block

number three of the accident report form. I put "poor planning"

as the cause of my accident. You said in your letter that I should

explain more fully, and I trust that the following details will be sufficient.


I am a bricklayer by trade. On the day of the accident, I was working alone

on the roof of a new six story building. When I completed my work, I

discovered that I had 500 pounds of brick left over. Rather than carry the

bricks down by hand, I decided to lower them in a barrel by using a pulley

which fortunately was attached to the side of the building, at the sixth



Securing the rope at ground level, I went up to the roof, swung the barrel

out, and loaded the bricks into it. Then I went back to the ground and untied

The rope, holding it tightly to insure a slow descent of the 500 pounds of

brick. You will note in block number 11 of the accident reporting form that I

weigh 135 pounds.


Due to my surprise of being pulled off the ground so suddenly, I lost my

presence of mind and forgot to let go of the rope. Needless to say, I

proceeded at a rather rapid rate up the side of the building.


In the vacinity of the third floor, I met the barrel coming down. This

explains the fractured skull and broken collarbone. Slowed only slightly,

I continued my rapid ascent, not stopping until the fingers of my right hand

were two knuckles deep in the pulley.


Fortunately, by this time I had regained my presence of mind and was able to

hold tightly to the rope in spite of my pain. At approximately the same time, the

barrel of bricks hit the ground and the bottom fell out of the barrel. Devoid of

the weight of the bricks, the barrel now weighed approximately fifty pounds.


I refer you now to my weight in box number eleven. As you might imagine, I

began a rapid descent down the side of the building. In the vacinity of the third floor,

I met the barrel coming up. This accounts for the two fractured ankles and the

lacerations of my legs and lower body.


The encounter with the barrel slowed me enough to lessen my injuries when I

fell onto the pile of bricks and, fortunately only three vertebrae were



I am sorry to report, however, that as I lay there on the bricks, in pain,

unable to stand, and watching the empty barrel six stories above me, I again

lost my presence of mind - I let go of the rope.

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