A construction worker on an American site in Connecticut was recently killed when he became trapped between a backhoe and trench box, crushing him.

The man was involved in the replacement of a water line on site last Friday when the accident took place.

According to reports, all attempts by paramedics to revive the man were unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead at the hospital.

The following is an excerpt from a website that explains what happened:

A construction worker in Windsor, Connecticut was killed Friday in a tragic trench accident. Danny King, 51, was working inside a trench Friday afternoon as part of a water line replacement project when he was crushed between a backhoe and a trench box, according to a report from NBC Connecticut. Paramedics made attempts to save King’s life upon arriving at the scene. He was pronounced dead at the hospital. King was the son of John King and worked for his father’s company King Construction.

Read more at: http://www.equipmentworld.com/construction-worker-killed-by-backhoe-in-trench-accident-in-connecticut/#sthash.TveL1T5u.dpuf

Although this incident took place on the other side of the globe, I thought it held some valuable lessons that even workers on Aussie sites can learn from.

  1. The company should have conducted a risk assessment and followed a hierarchy of controls to get the hazard under control it is a workers responsibility to ensure that they abide by the sites safety plan. For example if the plan includes utilising a specific PPE, employees have a responsibility to abide by the plan and their safety training.
  2. Employers need to understand each stage of the construction process and as the site changes, so will its hazards and risks, therefore the safety plan needs to change along with it. Workers need to undergo continuous and ongoing safety training to keep up to day with any site safety changes.
  3. When operating machinery or equipment, inspect it first, ensure it is in good condition and that guards are in place. Operators should pay particular attention to its moving parts and ensure they are guarded adequately.
  4. Those workers not involved in the operation of this equipment and machinery should ensure they keep a safe distance and remain in the exclusion zones.
  5. Operators should pay particular attention when reversing and proper procedure for reversing should be developed if reversing is absolutely necessary, otherwise it should be avoided altogether.

To learn more about construction site safety in general, workers and potential workers should undergo White Card training (which is the general construction induction course for workers in Oz).

This training is not only a compulsory requirement for all in the construction field but it will also ensure that workers are aware of common hazards that construction work can present. It also covers caught between hazards in general, as well as other risks associated with construction work in general.

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