The 2018 Trench Safety Stand Down (June 18-23) – co-sponsored by the National Utility Contractors Association (NUCA), supported by OSHA, presents the opportunity for employers to talk directly to employees and others about safety.
According to OSHA, excavating is recognized as one of the most hazardous construction operations. OSHA revised Subpart P, Excavations, of 29 CFR 1926.650, 29 CFR 1926.651, and 29 CFR 1926.652 to make the standard easier to understand, permit the use of performance criteria where possible, and provide construction employers with options when classifying soil and selecting employee protection methods.
Trenching and excavation hazards are addressed in specific standards for the general industry and marine terminals.
The Stand Downs will focus on trench & excavation hazards and reinforce the importance of using trench protective systems and protecting workers from trenching hazards.
The goal is to reach out to the many workers who work in and around trenches and excavations to provide them with information about current excavation requirements and safety procedures for working in trenches.
According to NUCA, one of the sponsors of the Stand Down, “In this way, we can reduce the number of fatalities and serious injuries that occur each year in our industry, and make others, such as municipal and industry workers who are also exposed, aware of these serious hazards.”
Companies will conduct a Trench Safety Stand Down by taking a break to have a toolbox talk or another safety activity to draw attention to the specific hazards related to working in and around trenches/excavations.
NUCA asks that companies provide feedback about their Stand Down, such as when it was held, how many workers participated, how you shared information with employees. NUCA will collect the information, publicize the overall total number of participants, and publish the names of the companies that held a Trench Safety Stand Down.
NUCA will provide a Certificate of Participation which will be emailed to all participating companies as well as publish a list of names of the organizations which held stand downs and sent in completion forms on the website and in its publications.