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Safety Tips In Trench and Excavating Jobs

Workplace fatalities are reported in trenches and excavations due to cave-ins, falls, and other unfortunate accidents. Construction work can pose serious safety hazards, but some of these work-related deaths in construction could have been prevented.

Safety Tips In Trench and Excavating Jobs
Safety Tips In Trench and Excavating Jobs

Executing proper safety measures is critical to the safety of workers. If the company you hire works with earth removal, the following safety tips could one day save a life.

Trench and an Excavation

There is a difference between a trench and an excavation. An excavation is any man-made cut, hole, trench, or depression in an earth surface formed by earth removal.

A trench is a long narrow ditch below the surface of the ground. Generally, its depth is greater than its diametre. However, the diametre of a trench must not be greater than 15 feet. Occupational safety and health agencies require all excavations five feet down or deeper be protected against collapse. Trenches 20 feet deep or greater require that a protective system be designed and approved by a registered professional engineer.

mandate that all excavations five feet down or deeper be protected against collapse.

Dangers of Working in Trenches and Excavations

Dirt is heavy and collapse in trenching and excavating work can be dangerous if not performed properly. Cave-ins present the greatest safety risk for contractors. Since one cubic yard can weigh as much as an automobile, an unprotected trench is a recipe for disaster.

The dangers of working in trenches and excavation include:

  • Falls
  • Falling loads
  • Hazardous atmospheres
  • Equipment incidents

Safety Tips In These Jobs

Safety is paramount in these jobs. Before the work begins, your company should implement these safety tips will benefit workers.

  • Avoid positioning heavy equipment near the edges of the trench
  • Make sure of the trench’s stability and identify other sources that could affect its condition
  • There should be at least two feet distance from the place of excavated soil to trench edges
  • Locate underground utilities before excavation begins
  • Test atmospheric hazards inside excavations to protect workers
  • Rigid monitoring of trenches at the start of every shift, after a rainstorm or after conditions change

It also helps to train oworkers to identify signs of imminent trench collapse, including bulging and toppling. Trenching and excavation jobs may pose serious hazards, but it’s possible to keep workers safe by following these simple, but important steps.

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