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April 7th, 2016

PA Workplace & Construction Accidents – Trench Cave-In Accidents at PA Construction Sites (March 2016)

Trenching and excavation are among some of the most dangerous operations at any given Pennsylvania construction site.  OSHA provides regulations employers must comply with in order to ensure the safety of their workers.  However, when regulations are ignored, workers are often seriously injured.

Just last month, two Pennsylvania companies were cited for exposing workers to trenching and excavation hazards.

PA Water, Sewer Line Contractor Cited for Exposing Workers to Trench Hazards

Last month, a PA water and sewer line contractor, Alton Industries, Inc., was cited for exposing workers to hazardous conditions at a worksite.  OSHA inspectors found an employee replacing a sewer pipe in an 8-9 ft. deep, unprotected excavation in front of a foreman.  The company was cited for a willful citation.  Five months prior to the most recent inspection, the company was cited for the lack of cave-in protection during another inspection where the same foreman was also present.

PA Paving Contractor Cited for Exposing Workers to Trench Hazards

Also last month, a PA paving contractor, Landfried Paving Inc., was cited by OSHA for exposing its employees to dangerous excavation hazards that could have resulted in a cave-in.  The company was installing drainage catch basins at a PA construction site when OSHA investigators found workers exposed to the risk of a cave-in for four days.  Workers were working inside an unprotected excavation at least 7 ft. deep with steep vertical walls.

Employers Need to Comply with OSHA Trenching and Excavation Regulations

OSHA has specific standards with regard to trenching and excavation, such as the requirement of a protection system for trenches 5 feet deep or greater.  See PA Work & Construction Accidents – Trenching and Excavation Cave-Ins and Injuries

What to Do After a Trench Cave-In Accident in PA

Construction workers in PA who are injured in trench cave-in accidents have legal rights.  It is in their best interest to seek advice from a PA work accident lawyer.  Injured workers are eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits under PA law.  They may also have a legal remedy against other parties.  Injured workers in PA may mistakenly believe that their only right after a workplace accident is to file a workers’ compensation claim.  This is not true.  They may have rights against other parties responsible for a cave-in accident, and sometimes even their employers.

See client review of Paul Bucci, Esq., from a construction worker who was injured in a Pennsylvania trench collapse accident. (Mr. Bucci was able to help the client recover from a third party, in addition to receiving workers’ compensation benefits.)

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