A New York City construction worker was rescued from an underground trench at subway construction projection early this morning, after being stuck in “muck” from the waist down for nearly four hours. The worker became trapped at 8:30 p.m. last night 75 feet below ground at the Second Avenue subway line site in Manhattan.
In Mississippi, the work involved gas and water lines. In Texas, sewer lines. What the two work sites had in common was that both involved trenches more than five feet deep, and neither provided its workers with protection against cave-ins.
OSHA has cited Cavalieri Construction Co. Inc. for alleged willful and serious violations of safety standards at a Chelsea worksite. The Everett-based contractor faces a total of $40,700 in proposed fines for excavation hazards identified during OSHA's April inspection of the work site.
OSHA has cited North Royalton-based DiGioia-Suburban Excavating for two willful safety violations after discovering that workers were allowed to ride inside an excavator bucket to access a trench at a Bowling Green job site on Nov. 17, 2011.
In an indication that trenching hazards remain a widespread problem, OSHA recently cited a Wisconsin pump service, Rhode Island contractor and Ohio excavation company for exposing workers to trenching hazards.
OSHA has proposed fines totaling $117,740 against Newport-based Raymond J. Cawley Contracting Inc. for allowing cave-in and other hazards while workers were excavating in Middletown to replace a sewer line.
Even after being informed of cave-in hazards, a Connecticut company continued to send workers into a ten-foot-deep trench in Hartford that lacked protection to prevent the walls from collapsing -- an action which earned Penney Construction Co. LLC seven OSHA citations and $169,000 in proposed fines.