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I’m quite amazed that I made it out of childhood all in one piece. Climbing trees, digging holes, and playing in underground tunnels were some of my favorite things to do outside. As a kid, you think everything in your environment is stable, unmovable and cannot hurt you in any way. Unfortunately, that holds true for adults. Deaths in the construction industry are higher than any other industry besides the fishing industry. A big part of that is because of trench cave ins, where workers build a trench for construction work, do not put up proper trench shoring equipment, and the walls of the trench cave in on them.
I became interested in the topic after reading a story in the New York Times about the staggering injuries and accidents, which really are accidents that can be easily avoided with proper equipment, training and knowledge about trenches. Unfortunately, since trench cave ins rarely ever occur, workers never take proper safety precaution when working in them. When a cave in does occur, it can bury any workers inside in over 10 feet of soil or gravel, and crush or suffocate them.
If you ever work in a construction zone with trenches around, be sure they are reinforced with proper hydraulic shoring methods, and any road surrounding the area won't damage the trenches. There are many companies that offer trench shoring rentals that can help construction companies save a lot of money if they only need shoring equipment for one occurrence.