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Northern Indiana Man Injured in Trench Collapse

Steve Wagner

A man in Northern Indiana was severely injured when he was buried up to his neck in soil in the middle of a trench cave-in. According to reports from the County sheriff’s department, the man, 66-year-old Dennis Ayres of North Manchester, Indiana, was installing field drainage tile when the dirt walls surrounding the trench collapsed.

When emergency crews arrived at the scene, they found Ayres buried with men attempting to dig him out. He was taken from the work site, about 40 miles south of South Bend, and airlifted to a hospital in Fort Wayne with serious shoulder and torso injuries.

OSHA has strict regulations and standards when it comes to trench work, because they can be extremely hazardous environments, and trench accidents are very common. According to OSHA, trenching and excavation rules include:

  • Keep heavy equipment away from the edges of the trench.
  • Keep surcharged loads at least 2 feet from the edges.
  • Be aware of the location of underground utilities.
  • Test for low oxygen and other hazardous gases.
  • Inspect trenches at the beginning of all shifts.
  • Inspect trenches following any rainstorm.
  • Do not work in a trench underneath a raised load.

Have you been injured in a trench collapse on a worksite that was not following OSHA regulations and code? If so, the construction site accident attorneys at Wagner Reese can assist you in recovering damages for your injury. Give us a call at (888) 204-8440 for more information and to schedule a free consultation.


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