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Trenching & Excavation

Trenching & Excavation

Excavations need to be planned by a person who is familiar with trench design and designed according to the type of soil to prevent cave-ins. Before starting any trenching or excavation work, workers should contact their local “dig alert” service to ensure that all underground lines are marked. For more detailed information on trenching and excavation, check out API WorkSafe training and relevant API safety standards.

Download/Print Rules to Live By Booklet

  • Contact the “dig alert” service before starting any trenching or excavation work.
  • Make sure that all buried lines have been located and marked before you start digging. CALL 811. Markings should remain in place throughout digging operations.
  • Keep excavated soil, materials and equipment more than 2 ft away from the edge of excavations.
  • A trained and competent person needs to make daily inspections of the excavation work site prior to the start of the work shift.
  • If you notice any evidence of possible cave-ins or slides, STOP WORK in the excavation immediately.
  • Excavations should be planned by a person who is familiar with trench design and designed according to the type of soil.
  • Cave-ins are the primary hazard associated with excavation and trenching. Precautions must be taken to ensure that excavations and trenches are designed properly and that escape routes are in place.
  • Provide proper acess/egress.
  • Assure those involved are authorized, trained and competent.
  • Prevent contact with overhead powerlines (e.g. signs, spotter).