COLUMBUS, Ohio (WDTN) – The City of Oakwood has been cited for violations by the state after a trench collapse in March.
The incident happened in the 200 block of Northview Road on the afternoon of March 8.
An Oakwood city employee became trapped while digging a ditch to make repairs to a sewer line. The worker became trapped from the waist down when the trench collapsed.
A second person who attempted to rescue the worker also became trapped.
An investigation by the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation found the City in violation of the rules when “a competent person did not remove employees from a hazardous trenching and excavation area and the situation resulted in a cave-in that exposed employees to struck-by and crush hazards.”
The first citation states, “Hazardous conditions that existed in the trench included, but were not necessarily limited to: trench walls that were not adequately protected from cave-in or collapse and; vibration from work vehicles adjacent to the trench.”
In a second citation, the investigation found, “Each employee in an excavation was not protected from cave-ins by an adequate protective system designed in accordance with paragraph (b) Design of sloping and benching systems or (c) Design of support systems, shield systems, and other protective systems.”
The Workers’ Compensation Bureau provide 2 NEWS with safety guides it provides to employers to avoid accidents of this kind. The Bureau points out these are general guides and were not created because of this incident. If you would like to read the citations from the state see below.