The hazards posed by excavations in Tennessee and elsewhere can never be emphasized enough. The chances of a construction worker surviving a trench collapse are minimal because one cubic yard of soil can weigh as much as a small car. Being buried under such a load usually causes suffocation long before rescuers can save a victim of a trench collapse.
With such limited odds of survival, a construction worker miraculously survived being buried under three feet of soil in a neighboring state. Reportedly, the incident occurred on a recent Monday morning at a construction site at which workers were digging a trench in preparation to lay a sewer line. According to first responders, the man worked in an excavation with an approximate depth of 18 feet.
It is not clear whether any of the methods mandated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to protect the collapse of trench walls were in place. Reportedly, rescue crews managed to retrieve the construction worker within an hour. His physical injuries were reported to be non-life-threatening.
Such a construction site accident could have long-term psychological consequences. Being buried under a load of soil and knowing that hardly anybody ever survives a trench collapse will naturally cause indescribable trauma during the time that the rescuers work frantically to remove the dirt. When such accidents occur on Tennessee construction sites, victims might find comfort knowing that an experienced workers’ compensation attorney can assist with a pursuit to recover medical expenses for both physical and psychological medical care received. Benefits will also cover a portion of lost wages for the period of temporary disability.