Trenching is important, and you must know how to do so safely. Engineers and workers use specialized equipment to get the job done right. However, this necessary job comes with some dangers, so everyone involved in the process needs to take the appropriate precautions. Not only will this make sure they do the job right, but also safely. Read through this ultimate guide to trenching to ensure you understand these must-know safety trenching tips!
Know the Common Hazards
One of the most important ways to ensure safety is to ensure you understand the most common hazards. By understanding these hazards, you can plan the best ways of preventing them from occurring. Some of the most common dangers you need to know about are:
- Falling objects
- Slips and falls
You should create safety measures for all these situations then communicate them to all your employees before a dig. Employees may need a reminder before tasks. Keep the information clear and concise, so all individuals constantly remain aware.
The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSHA) outlines many of the safety measures your company must take for the well-being of all involved employees. Employees need training on appropriate procedures and how to use the equipment. The job gets done right when everyone understands the rules and regulations.
Take Safety Measures
Once you know the hazards to look out for, it’s time to take safety precautions. This includes training employees on how to use various tools and how to do the job safely. Workers need to inspect the trench before working inside to decrease the chances of an accident.
Have an Evacuation Plan
Having an effective evacuation plan is essential. You don’t want to wait until a worst-case scenario, as it could lead to scrambling or employee injury. However, having everyone involved in the evacuation plan benefits everyone on the job, even if the trench is shallow.
You should always have a plan so everyone working the job knows what to do and where to go if an emergency arises. In addition, you need to follow OSHA’s guidelines to keep workers protected against every scenario.
According to OSHA, employees need a safe way of entering and exiting the trench. This could be a ladder or ramp, depending on how deep the trench is. In addition, you may need multiple entries and exit points, as it should always be within at least 25 feet of all employees. Not only does this make it easy to get in and out of the trench, but it also ensures employees can escape if an emergency occurs.
Perform Routine Checks
Inspecting the trench is necessary, as a routine check prevents the risk of a cave-in. So, whether there was a change in outside conditions or it’s just a new day, someone must inspect the trench for safety.
For instance, one of the factors that affect the safety of the trench is the latest weather. If it rained or snowed recently, the soil might not be the same as the previous day. Employees should never work in a trench that has been deemed unsafe.
A “competent person” is the title given to the individual performing safety checks. This individual must know all possible dangers given the situation, as well as how to prevent them. Having this individual included in the trenching process isn’t just necessary, but it’s also a legal requirement for them to inspect the trench daily.
Be Aware of Falling Material
Sometimes, debris or equipment may fall, posing a danger for anyone below. Protect your employees by requiring them to wear all essential gear like hard hats and safety vests. Likewise, keep signs up and around the area to warn employees working in the trench below.
Evaluate Land Before Starting
Before you begin digging out a trench, inspect the ground and know what lies below. The last thing you want is to start digging only to hit the gas, electric, or water line. By locating all utility lines, you prevent gas leaks and injury.
Before you begin to trench, you must contact the appropriate agency to get all possible lines marked.
Reasons To Go Trenchless
It’s no secret that trenching is dangerous. Doing the job improperly can lead to tragedy, so you need to offer plenty of training and take precautionary measures. But what if you didn’t have to dig out a trench to complete the job? Companies like Complete Trenchless utilize modern technology to do exactly that!
This means avoiding dangers and not tearing up a front lawn if you need a water pipe fixed—and these are just two small reasons to go with a trenchless company. In addition, you don’t have to worry about the trench collapsing because you use tools to dig underground.
It’s More Convenient
Going trenchless is safer and less time-consuming. Typically, trenchless companies utilize underground cameras to check for where the damage is before creating the entry hole. Since this doesn’t involve digging, it takes less time and is much easier.
Trenchless technology doesn’t require intensive labor, so overall costs remain lower. It also allows you to help your clients save money since they won’t need to redo landscape to cover a large ditch. This makes you stand out to all potential customers.
Better for the Earth
By going trenchless, you also choose the eco-friendly option. Digging a large trench disrupts the earth and could lead to water contamination if done by a body of water. So, when you go trenchless, you choose the option that’s safer for the environment.
When you’re digging a trench the old-fashioned way, understand the must-know safety trenching tips in this ultimate guide to trenching. Employees must be and feel safe. Trenching is dangerous—workers could slip, rubble could fall, and you need an evacuation plan. A competent person must evaluate the trench each day to ensure it’s structurally sound to prevent hazards.
You can avoid all these common hazards by going trenchless. Modern technology allows specialists to work on water and other underground lines in a cost-effective, safe, and eco-friendly way. If you need trenching contractors, then contact Compete Trenchless. Our highly trained staff will get the job done right and exceed your expectations!