Excavation and Trenching

3 hazards facing workers who must enter excavation and trenching sites

Trenching and excavating are a regular part of construction work and are required for a wide range of construction projects. However, it can be very hazardous work. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), an average of 54 fatalities occur each year during trenching and excavating work.

It is important that all workers involved in trenching and excavating are instructed on health and safety procedures. They should also be aware of OSHA standards for trenching and excavating. Trained personnel should always be nearby to supervise excavation and trenching work and should be aware of all potential hazards in the workplace.

What kinds of hazards are involved with excavating and trenching?

Some of the most common hazards facing workers at excavation and trenching sites are:

  1. Cave-ins — Cave-ins are a serious threat to worker safety that can cause injury and asphyxiation. Trench boxes and other safety precautions can help prevent cave-ins. Since weather and other conditions can change the soil quickly, it is important to inspect the excavation at the beginning of each shift.
  2. Fall risks — Workers can easily fall into an open trench or excavation area if they are not careful. Heavy equipment can also fall, posing a threat to workers inside. Barriers and signage need to surround all excavation sites to prevent dangerous falls.
  3. Atmospheric hazards — Excavation sites may contain atmospheric hazards such as gas, chemicals or a lack of oxygen. Excavations that measure deeper than 4 feet are recommended to test for atmospheric hazards.

How can I keep my workers safe during excavation and trenching?

Highly trained personnel and professional safety equipment are all vital to ensuring that your workers stay safe during hazardous work. That’s where Basin Safety can help. We offer the most comprehensive workplace safety programs and services available. Our services include:

  • Health and safety programs — Our workplace health and safety programs are designed to train your workers in all matters of workplace safety and procedure. Our trenching, shoring, and excavating program is OSHA compliant and helps your team avoid injury and property damage.
  • Inspections — Trust Basin Safety with all your necessary environmental and facility inspections. You can trust our team of professionals to protect both your company assets and the public’s health while maintaining the highest standards of service.
  • Equipment services — We offer comprehensive services for maintaining your breathing air systems, fire safety systems and rescue equipment. Our regular inspection data is uploaded to our system the same day for easy access by your team.

Contact us today for more information on how Basin Safety can help you meet your workplace safety goals.

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