Civil Construction Firm Charged over Worker Trench Deaths

While charges, fines and prosecutions aren’t the most serious consequences of workplace incidents such as trench collapses, (the human cost is much higher) they hopefully do serve as a deterrent for others to avoid similar mistakes that can have such as tragically high cost of human life.

One such incident involved the deaths of 2 workers who died in Ballarat last year when a trench collapsed. The civil construction company involved has since been charged with breaches of section 21 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act. The company is accused of failing to maintain the battering or benching of the excavation and failure to use trench shields and manhole cages to avoid the risk of engulfment. It also failed to provide workers with supervision.

The incident took place in March 2018 when the 2 workers were laying pipe in the trench at a housing development site. One worker, a 34 year old died on the scene while the other worker, a 21 year old man died in the hospital shortly afterwards.

The court case is ongoing.

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Worker Killed in Construction Trench Incident

A man has been killed in a trench accident on a building site in Melbourne recently.

According to reports, emergency services were called to the site in the town of Wallan where they discovered the injured man. Despite attention from paramedics the man died at the scene.

It is believed he fell into the trench at the housing estate site when the trench collapsed around 2:50pm.

Rescuers attempted to rescue the man out of the trench but police confirmed the man died around 4pm.

The trench was 2 metres wide and 8-10 metres deep.

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Man Collapses in Trench at Victorian Construction Site

A worker in Melbourne’s Southeast is in a critical condition after collapsing in a trench at a construction site on Friday.

The incident happened at 11:30am on Friday and emergency services were called to the building site.

The man’s condition is believed to have been caused by a medical condition, a spokesperson from Ambulance Victoria said in a statement.

CFA crews were in attendance, assisting with removing the man from the trench.


This sad incident is a reminder that we need to be prepared for anything on a construction site. That is one of the reasons why White Card general construction induction training is mandatory for everyone engaging in work on a construction site in Australia.What would you do if a colleague collapsed on the work site? One of the topics covered in general by the course, is what to do in an emergency, aimed at teaching workers how to respond to an emergency on site.

Find out more here.