A trench collapse which left one worker trapped and seriously injured, has resulted in a $75,000 fine for the earthmoving company involved.
Workers were excavating a trench to lay sewer pipes with a second trench adjacent to the one being excavated. The spoil was along half the length of the north side of the trench and a worker was told to pass a tool from a co-worker inside the trench to the excavator operator on the side of trench. This resulted in the trench collapsing, causing him to be engulfed in the spoil and one side of the trench.
The worker sustained serious injuries including fractured ribs, back and pelvis, as well as a displaced shoulder, an injured sternum, damaged right wrist, collapsed lung, nerve damage and an eye haemorrhage.
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