Two Men Killed in Colorado Trench Collapse

Incident provides yet another good reminder of the importance of proper excavation safety and the fatal ramifications that can result from missteps

Two Men Killed in Colorado Trench Collapse

(Photo from the Fort Collins Coloradoan)

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Investigators are still determining whether any safety devices were in place at the site of a trench collapse last week in Colorado that killed two workers.

According to the Fort Collins Coloradoan, 60 first responders worked seven hours in an attempt to rescue the men. The trench collapse occurred April 16 at the job site for a new housing development in Windsor, Colorado. Small shovels and buckets had to be used due to the soil conditions.

The OSHA investigation into the incident is underway, but according to Windsor Severance Fire Rescue Chief Kriz Kazian, a trench box in the 15-foot-deep, 4-foot-wide trench was not present, though he was unsure if there were any other safety devices in place.

As the exact circumstances surrounding the trench collapse are investigated, it’s once again a good reminder of the importance of always practicing proper trench safety measures due to the potential for literal life and death situations. Trench-related fatalities had a spike in 2016 at 23 — more than the number of deaths in 2014 and 2015 combined — but have since improved. There were 19 fatalities in 2017 and 13 in 2018.

Still, the fact that there are any trench fatalities to begin with is a sign that safety needs to always be top of mind.

Source: Fort Collins Coloradoan


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