If you work in construction, you know to always to keep an eye out for dangers above ground. The consequences can be grave, whether it is something that falls on you or you that does the falling.
Yet you do not need to be above ground for falls to be a risk. Most construction sites have trenches and holes that make working risky. Here are some dangers to be aware of:
Hitting cables or pipes while excavating the trench
Your employer should carry out a thorough assessment to ensure they know what lies under ground they expect you to excavate. If necessary, they may need to cut off the electricity, water or gas temporarily.
Falling into the hole or trench
Preventing this requires proper marking and roping or fencing off around the hole to ensure people are aware of the trench and cannot accidentally fall into it.
The trench collapses with you inside
This comes down to a regular assessment of the trench’s stability by someone qualified to do so. The supports themselves also need to be of adequate material and strength.
Items fall into the trench while you are inside
Once again, marking or fencing off the area can help stop this. Other measures could include diverting routes away from near the edge of the hole and stopping any work above when you are inside.
Proper consideration of where to store materials is also crucial. For example, storing reels of cable uphill from the trench raises the chance they roll down into it if knocked by a machine.
If you are injured in a construction trench, consider legal help to claim compensation.