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Construction laborer dies in trench cave-in at oil tank removal site in Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Department of Health
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, FACE 97MA031, 1998 Feb; :1-4
On August 4, 1997, a 17 year old construction laborer working with his father died of injuries sustained in a trench cave-in at an oil tank removal site. The victim was working in the trench cutting the rods which held the tank in the ground when the incident occurred. Without warning, the trench collapsed pushing the victim against the tank. He struck his head on the tank and was unconscious. The fire department was called and arrived immediately. They worked with bystanders in the trench to free the victim. The victim was transported to a nearby hospital emergency room, where he was pronounced dead on arrival. The MA FACE Program concluded that to prevent similar future occurrences, employers, and self-employed contractors, should: 1. Slope or shore all excavations which may be entered for any reason. 2. Perform regular inspections of trenches for instability. And also that: 3. Owners should not allow their children under 18 years of age to perform tasks prohibited by the child labor laws. 4. Government agencies should increase their efforts to inform the public about child labor laws.
Region-1; Accident-analysis; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Traumatic-injuries; Work-operations; Work-analysis; Work-areas; Work-performance; Work-practices; Safety-education; Safety-equipment; Safety-measures; Safety-monitoring; Protective-measures; Training; Children; Age-factors; Construction; Construction-equipment; Construction-industry; Construction-workers
Publication Date
Document Type
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
FACE-97MA031; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-108704
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
Massachusetts Department of Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division