2019 Trench Safety Stand-Down Week: Avoiding the Trenches of Trench Work

For a week each May, construction workers across the nation take a moment to “stand-down” for safety. OSHA’s National Stand-Down for Safety Week was created to address the leading cause of death for construction employees, falls from elevation, which accounted for 366 of the 971 construction-related fatalities in 2017. Throughout Safety Stand-Down week, MSA actively provides onsite fall protection training in an effort to increase awareness, and decrease the chance for injury.

As accidents and injuries are not specific to those working at heights, it’s important to receive training in any environment where the potential for injury exists. Safety Stand-Downs provide excellent opportunities for employers and safety product manufacturers to talk directly with those on the front line. With that, MSA will be participating in 2019’s Trench Safety Stand-Down week, taking place June 17-21.

Trench-related deaths in 2016/2017 numbered 49 and accidents in these areas can often times provide unique challenges in terms of rescue, resources and post-incident evaluation. The Trench Stand-Down event will address some of the specific hazards related to working in and around trenches and excavated areas.

For those working in these areas, there are several dangers of which they need to be aware. Cave-ins rank highly on this list and may present a serious risk.

OSHA points out that one cubic yard of soil can weigh as much as a car. It is critical that workers do not enter trenches until adequate measures have been taken to address the possibility of cave-ins. Additionally, workers need to be sure that there are no underground obstacles impeding the excavation and presenting potential dangers, such as buried cables, sewer lines, water lines, etc. These examples are just a small sample of the potential dangers present.

MSA is excited to be participating in 2019’s national Trench Safety Stand-Down to further address the potential dangers found in trench work and provide training that builds awareness of these dangers while helping to mitigate the risks.

To learn more about Trench Safety Stand-Down week, visit https://www.nuca.com/tssd

To speak with an MSA representative and set up a training as it relates to trench/excavation safety, contact MSA’s customer service team at us.cs@msasafety.com

For those in the Philadelphia area on June 21, MSA’s Joe Gormley and Andy DeLair will be on site with representatives from OSHA, United Rentals, Med-Tex Services, and other industry experts at a free stand-down event in Philadelphia.  MSA will provide guidance on best practices in Atmospheric Monitoring, and Fall Protection/Rescue for Trenching work. More information can be found here: https://www.trenchsafetyevents.com/events/philadelphia-pa-stand-down-breakfast

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