Dugan & Associates, P.C.
No Recovery - No FeeFree Consultation
Serving all of Western Pennsylvania
Local: 412-353-3572 Toll Free: 888-9-9-D-U-G-A-N Toll Free: 888-9-9-D-U-G-A-N

OSHA reports safety violations led to deadly trench collapse

Pennsylvania workers may wish to know that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has issued 10 safety violations to a New Jersey landscaping company in connection with a deadly trench collapse in October 2014. The agency is recommending fines totaling $77,000.

On Oct. 1, 2014, two men employed by Bednar Landscape Services Inc. were installing a French drain system at a historic farm in Boonton, New Jersey, when the trench they were in collapsed, trapping them. Both workers died. OSHA's investigation found that the trench had no cave-in protection even though it was up to 13 feet in depth. The agency requires all trenches 5 feet or deeper to be protected with a trench box or sloping walls.

An OSHA representative said that one cubic yard of soil can equal the weight of a small car, and that the company needlessly placed its workers in mortal danger by not following regulations. The landscape company was issued a willful citation for not protecting the trench workers. A willful violation is given when a company knowingly, intentionally or voluntarily disobeys a regulation with plain indifference to worker safety. It was also issued serious violations for failing to provide a trench ladder at 25-foot intervals, not having the trench inspected by a competent person, not providing head protection to workers and other violations. OSHA reports that two workers are killed every month in trench collapses. A representative for the agency said workers should never enter an unprotected trench.

When workplace accidents occur, most Pennsylvania employees have access to workers' compensation benefits provided by their employer. These benefits are designed to cover medical expenses and a portion of a worker's wages as they recover from an injury. In order to ensure that the claim is properly filed, an injured worker may find it helpful to seek the assistance of an attorney.

Source: EHS Today, "OSHA: Lack of Cave-In Protections Led to Trench Collapse," Sandy Smith, April 10, 2015

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Pittsburgh Office
4 West Manilla Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15220

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 412-922-0800
Fax: 412-922-0801
Pittsburgh Law Office Map

Beaver County Office
2002 McMinn St.
Aliquippa, PA 15001

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 724-775-7372
Aliquippa Law Office Map

North Hills
6400 Brooktree Ct.
Wexford, PA 15090

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 724-933-0133
Wexford Law Office Map

Butler County
125 Warrendale-Bayle Rd
Warrendale, PA 15086

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 724-283-7063
Map & Directions

Monroeville
400 Penn Center Blvd.
Suite 101
Monroeville, PA 15232

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 412-261-1129
Map & Directions

Westmoreland County
101 N. Main St.
Suite 104 - A
Greensburg, PA 15601

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 724-836-7454
Greensburg Law Office Map

Washington County
2400 Ansys Dr.
Canonsburg, PA 15317

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 724-743-0463
Canonsburg Law Office Map

Serving all of Western Pennsylvania Free Consultation

REVIEW US