Following a seven-year effort to address trench and excavation accidents, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced the issue to be the organization’s primary focus for 2018. This effort includes a national stand down on excavation work to facilitate a safety dialogue in New Jersey and across the United States.
It’s not hard to understand the reasoning behind this national focus. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, injuries related to excavations and trenches in 2016 were five times the average of the previous five years. The goal for 2018, according to OSHA, is increasing awareness of hazards in trench construction, reducing the number of collapses and educating workers on cave-in prevention strategies.
The highlight of OSHA’s 2018 campaign is the National Utility Contractors Association’s 2018 Trench Safety Stand Down. The stand down is scheduled for June 18 to 23. The focus of the stand down revolves around trench and excavation hazards. The stand down will also focus on the value of trench protective systems and how they can safeguard employees against excavation dangers.
Excavation and trench accidents can lead to devastating injuries. While OSHA hopes to limit these accidents, injuries will still occur. An individual injured in a work-related accident may have grounds for a workers compensation claim for medical bills, pain and suffering and lost wages. An attorney with experience in workers compensation law may be able to assist in proceeding with a workers compensation claim. An attorney might negotiate a settlement with the employer or their insurance carrier. If a settlement falls through, an attorney may be able to file a lawsuit with the state workers compensation division.